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  • Phyllis H. Moore

Fig and Cheese, Yes Please

I don't think I tasted figs until I moved to Goliad in 2004 and lived next door to Alline Bethke. Mrs. Bethke is deceased now. She was in her late 80s when she introduced me to her fig trees and fig preserves. After the first norther, she'd be at my door with fresh baked bread and a jar of her homemade fig preserves. The taste was Heaven. I've yet to find a store-bought version that tastes quite like Alline's, but this recipe reminds me of her.

We've been on a charcuterie binge. Seems like everything I like to eat can be broken down into its parts and placed on a cutting board. The grazing aspect of the board appeals to me too, fewer dishes to wash. This cheese log is great for watching football games or as an appetizer

before holiday meals. Serve with crostini, crackers, or fresh apple or pear slices.

The colors of the ingredients look festive on a plate. Pistachios give the holiday green, but you can substitute pecans or walnuts and maybe add some green in parsley or cilantro. If I used cilantro, I might add some cumin and a little salt into the fig and honey. If goat cheese isn't a favorite, try mixing a soft or grated cheese with cream cheese and change the shape by forming in a ramekin or small aluminum mold. Line the container with plastic wrap so it's easier to unmold.

Recipe: 1 Tbsp fig jam or spread, 2 Tbsp honey, 1/4 cup of pistachios, roasted, 1 (11 oz) goat cheese log), crackers.

Chop pistachios after roasting and put them on a plate. Combine fig spread and honey in small microwave safe bowl and melt for a few seconds. Roll cheese log in pistachios. Put on serving plate and pour fig mixture over and garnish. Great on crostini or buttery cracker.

One of my characters, Tom Richards, in the Meg Miller Mystery series loves a good charcuterie. Alline Bethke and Tom inspire me.

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