I'm always amazed by the bounty of late summer. The heat of the day is tinged with a promising crispness, and fruits and vegetables in every luxurious color just won't stop coming. The star of the season, to me, is the fig. Buxom, sweet and floral, and here for just a short while, I eat as many as I can—as many ways as I can. Fall has definitely arrived this past week and while the temperatures are thankfully cooler that doesn't mean we won't be eating salads anymore. With the Mission figs ripe and hanging on the tree in the yard, and a gift of Gala apples from a friend's orchard, I decided to use these seasonal flavors together. This combination of sweet, juicy figs with their gorgeous color, and crisp, crunchy apples is amazing paired with the creamy, tart-sweet, goat cheese dressing. The toasted walnuts add just the right nutty bite. Add some poached chicken if you like for more of a main dish salad. Welcome Fall!
Fig & Apple Salad + Creamy Goat Cheese Dressing
4 oz goat cheese
¼ cup créme fraiche
2 T lemon juice
3 T water
1 T local honey
pinch of sea salt and a few grinds of pepper
2 small apples, Gala, Fuji or Pink Lady
6 fresh figs, halved
½ cup walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped
6 handfuls of baby mixed greens
Place the goat cheese, crème fraîche, lemon juice, honey, water, salt and pepper in bowl and whisk until smooth. Set aside. Arrange the baby greens, apples and figs on a salad plate or serving platter. Sprinkle with the toasted walnuts and serve with the goat cheese dressing. Serves 4–6.
As a caterer for over 30 years, I have established a reputation for consistently creating original menus inspired by the occasion and the season, presenting them with an ease and elegance uniquely my own. Fresh, locally-sourced ingredients are the basis of my creative “from scratch” menus, which range from the classically elegant to rustic and whimsical.
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