It seems like forever since I've had a quiet, lazy morning in my kitchen -- experimenting and taking photos. But that's what I did today, and the result gave us an incredible Sunday lunch on the patio.
Here it is, already mid-September and this was the first meal I've prepared this summer with figs! I'm always making salads with figs, grilling them, making tarts or pizzas with them. I wanted to use the figs differently today. I have to say, I think these individual Savory Fig Custards with Prosciutto Spirals were extraordinary!
Figs and prosciutto... what could be better?
+ Savory Fig Custards with Prosciutto Spirals
• 8 slices Prosciutto di Parma
• 8 fresh Black Mission Figs
• 3 large eggs
• 3/4 cup Half & Half (light cream)
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/4 teaspoon coarse cracked pepper
• 1/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
• 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
• 2 tablespoons balsamic reduction (also called balsamic glaze)
• 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• salt & pepper, to taste
• 4 ounces arugula
PREHEAT OVEN to 375˚F
1. Take the slices of Prosciutto di Parma and wrap each piece around a wooden or metal skewer, partially over-lapping the Prosciutto while you wrap. It should look like a long cigarette. Place the skewers on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake on the middle rack of the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
2. While the Prosciutto is in the oven, rub four 3/4 cup ramekins with olive oil. Line the base of the ramekins with a disk of waxed paper.
3. Quarter the figs and using two figs per ramekin, line the bottom of the ramekins with the quartered figs. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, Half & Half, salt, cracked pepper, Parmigiano Reggiano, and fresh thyme. Pour and divide the custard evenly over the figs. Place the ramekins in a baking pan and make a bain-marie (water bath) by pouring hot water in the pan to reach about halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
4. Gently slide the baking pan onto the middle rack of the oven and bake the custards for 30 minutes, or until set. When finished baking, remove from the oven and then remove the ramekins from the bain-marie. Cool for 10 minutes.
5. While the custards are cooling, make a vinaigrette by whisking together the balsamic vinegar reduction and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Take about 4 ounces of arugula and toss with the balsamic vinaigrette.
6. Divide arugula between four plates. Using a sharp knife, run the blade around the edge of the custards and unmold. Place custard on top of the arugula and top with two Prosciutto Spirals.
TAKE a LOOK: