Once I got them home, I had to decide what to do with them. I don't have them often, and the few times I've eaten them I've just eaten them as is. They're such a rare treat for me that I enjoy them just as nature made them.
But this time I wanted to doll them up a bit. I recently learned how to make creme fraiche so I had some in the refrigerator. I thought a dollop would be nice over lightly poached figs, and the sherry I have on hand for Mexican Wine Cookies made the perfect poaching liquid.
These took just a few minutes to prepare, and they make a beautiful presentation. The perfect finish to a light summer meal.
BLACK MISSION FIGS SIMMERED IN SHERRY WITH CREME FRAICHE
Makes 4 servings
1 pint black mission figs
2 Tbsp sugar
1/4 cup sweet sherry
1 Tbsp butter
Wash the figs and trim the stems. Place in a three-quart saucepan with sugar and sherry over medium-low heat. Once the sugar has melted and it starts to boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and poach for about 5 minutes. Remove the figs from the pan and add the butter, letting it melt into the sauce. Cook a few minutes longer, until the sauce has thickened.
To serve, place 3 or 4 figs on a plate and cut them into quarters, leaving them whole at the bottom. Open the quarters and drop a dollop of the creme fraiche over each fig. Spoon some of the sauce over the figs.
*To make creme fraiche: Add 2 tablespoons of buttermilk to 1 cup of heavy cream in a glass bowl or measuring cup and mix well. Let stand at room temperature until it thickens to the consistency of sour cream - anywhere from a few hours to overnight. Stir and refrigerate. Will last up to two weeks in the refrigerator.