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From the Ground Up: Figs

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‘From the Ground Up’ is our feature that dishes the dirt on those fruit and vegetables that we don’t want your taste buds to miss out on!

You may not believe it, but when it comes to figs, there are actually hundreds of different varieties which are grouped into four main colours: white, green, red and purple or black.

What are they good for? 

Figs are rich in both fibre and potassium and so are known to act as a natural laxative that improves digestive wellness, as well as a way of lowering blood pressure. Thanks to their sweetness, figs are also sometimes used as a sweetener in dishes, as opposed to using refined sugars.

What do they taste like?

Figs are described as a unique tasting fruit. They have quite a sweet taste and although part of their outer texture is soft and chewy, they are packed with hundreds of edible crunchy seeds inside. Figs can be enjoyed both peeled or unpeeled, depending on personal preference. Many people choose to keep the skin on as figs are soft and sticky and therefore can be difficult to eat.

How do you store, prepare and cook it?

To store: If your figs are slightly small and green in colour then they are under-ripe and should be kept outside the fridge to ripen up. Otherwise, you should store them in the fridge with each separately wrapped in loose kitchen paper. They are enjoyed best at room temperature, so remove from the fridge an hour before eating.

To prepare: Don’t wash figs until they are about to be consumed. To do this, gently wipe the skin with a damp cloth. If the stem of the fig is hard, you should cut this off and then cut in half. You could even try cutting your fig into a flower with this easy method; just cut a deep cross at the top end of the fig but don’t cut all the way through. Once you squeeze the base, the four quarters will open up like petals and you’ll have your very own flower fig.

To cook: Figs are usually eaten raw but if you would like to cook them, we suggest you either halve them and grill for a few minutes, alternatively you can roast them for around 10 minutes or poach them whole for 5-8 minutes.

Availability 

Figs are in season between summer and autumn from August through to early October, so right now! They perish quickly due to their delicacy and so are best eaten within the first couple of days of purchase. Dried figs however, are available all year round.

Our Top Recipe

We recommend you combine figs with goat’s cheese and Parma ham for a delicious salad. Dried figs are traditionally used in baking and if you’re an avid bake-off fan, you will have spotted that recently the bakers were challenged with making fig rolls in their technical challenge. Why not try making some yourself?

Add figs to your basket today.

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