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SOURCE California Fig Advisory Board; California Fresh Fig Growers Association
Celebrate Nutrition Every Day with New Usage Ideas from California's Fig Growers
FRESNO, Calif., March 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- It's small, delicious and powerfully nutritious – California Dried Figs are one of the exciting reasons to celebrate nutrition every day!
Available year-round, Dried California Figs are an admired delicacy for their distinctive flavor and wholesome nutrients. In fact, one serving of Dried California Figs (3-5 figs) contains 20 percent of your daily value of fiber, and no fat, cholesterol or sodium. California Figs also contain calcium, magnesium, antioxidants and potassium, all of which are considered "shortfall nutrients" in the diet by the United States Department of Agriculture.
"Contrary to popular belief, healthy doesn't mean it has to taste bad," says Julie M. Jones, Ph.D., L.N., C.N.S., and nutrition advisor to the California Dried Fig Industry. "California Figs are full of amazing nutritional attributes that make this indulgent 'treat' healthy and satisfying enough to be a daily staple. Figs are an outstanding ingredient for taking any snack or dish to a whole new level of flavor, beauty and nutrition."
In addition to being naturally nutritious, figs and fig flavors are on trend (highlighted as one of the culinary world's trending items by the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade in 2012) and fit with many of today's popular recipe trends as well.
For example, here are five trends and five ways to enjoy the delicious, nutritious Dried California Fig:
Brochette of Quail and California Mission Figs with Winter Green Salad
Completely bone quail leaving leg and wing attached. Then, cut each quail in half, and cut each breast into two pieces, one piece with wing attached and one without; remove leg and divide thigh from drumstick to make 8 pieces from each quail. Set aside. Remove and discard stems from figs, and cut figs in half lengthwise; set aside. Trim stalk and root from fennel bulb and cut white center part into 12 small pieces about the same size as the figs. Divide and thread onto 12 skewers, alternating pieces of quail breasts, thighs and legs with figs, fennel and sage leaves; brush all over with extra virgin olive oil.
Arrange brochettes over hot charcoal fire or on well oiled broiler pan under hot broiler, and cook 15 to 20 minutes or until quail is fully cooked, to 165 degrees F internal temperature at thickest parts, turning frequently. Meanwhile, turn salad greens into large mixing bowl. In another small bowl, combine all ingredients for salad dressing and whisk to blend thoroughly. Drizzle salad greens with about one-half dressing and toss to coat lightly; reserve remaining half.
To serve, divide and portion salad onto 6 individual serving plates, and arrange two skewers per plate on top. Drizzle reserved dressing over all; serve at once.
1. Substitute chicken breast or smoked duck for the quail or use pieces of pork or chicken sausage for a change of pace - and taste.
2. Choose any combination of salad greens in season and serve this all year long.
NUTRITION FACTS (per serving)
Calories 480 (51% from Fat); Total Fat 29g; Saturated Fat 5g; Trans Fat -0-g; Cholesterol 55mg; Sodium 180mg; Potassium 880mg; Carbohydrate 43g; Sugar 32g; Dietary Fiber 10g; Protein 18g;
Daily Values: Vitamin A 45%; Vitamin C 35%; Calcium 15%; Iron 30%.
Roasted California Mission Figs Stuffed with Bacon, Jalapeno Peppers and Cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In heavy skillet, cook bacon over medium-high heat until browned but not too crisp; cool and cut each slice into 4 pieces. Remove and discard stems from figs, and trim a thin slice from the bottom of each fig so that it will stand upright. Then, cut each fig in half, horizontally. Without removing seeds, slice jalapeno crosswise into 8 round slices - for spicy bites, make slices thick or, if you prefer milder bites, cut very thin slices. Slice cheese about 1/4-inch thick and cut slices into 8 pieces, each about 1/2-inch square.
Arrange bottom half of figs on well oiled baking sheet. Layer each half with slice of cooked bacon, slice of jalapeno, and square of cheese, and replace top half of each fig. Press together lightly. Then, heat in oven at 350 degrees F for about 15 minutes or until cheese has melted. Very carefully transfer figs to serving dish, and drizzle lightly with extra virgin olive oil. Insert decorative skewers or picks in center of each fig and serve warm.
Yields: 8 appetizers
NUTRITION FACTS (per serving)
Calories 150 (51% from Fat); Total Fat 9g; Saturated Fat 4g; Trans Fat -0-g; Cholesterol 20mg; Sodium 190mg; Potassium 170mg; Carbohydrate 13g; Sugar 11g; Dietary Fiber 2g; Protein 6g;
Daily Values: Vitamin A 4%; Vitamin C 10%; Calcium 10%; Iron 2%.
Salted Caramel Chocolate Figs
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
Combine cream, vanilla, butter and brown sugar in heavy bottomed saucepan. Heat and stir over low heat until sugar is dissolved and butter is melted. Bring to a boil; cover. Reduce heat to low, and cook for 3 minutes, making sure it does not boil over. Remove cover; increase heat to medium, and continue cooking until candy thermometer reaches 280 degrees F or until caramelized. Turn onto prepared baking sheet and cool at room temperature.
Meanwhile, cut a small slice from one side of each fig, and make a well by pushing the back of a 1/2-teaspoon measure into center of that side; set aside. When caramel is cool enough to handle, measure 1/2-teaspoon portions and press into figs, smoothing across opening.
Then, place 12 ounces of chocolate in top of double boiler over hot water and stir frequently until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and stir in remaining 4 ounces of chocolate, until melted and smooth.
Using tweezers, dip each caramel-filled fig into the melted chocolate. Lay flat side up onto the parchment-lined sheet tray. Let stand about 1 minute, and sprinkle lightly with sea salt just before the chocolate sets.
Note: Maldon (brand) sea salt recommended.
Yields: 30 chocolates
Gorgonzola Stuffed California Figs with Prosciutto
Divide prosciutto into 24 long, thin strips; set aside. Starting at stem end, cut figs in half lengthwise, leaving blossom end intact. Spoon about 1/2 teaspoon cheese in center of each and press halves back together. Wrap each fig with strip of prosciutto and thread onto skewers. Grill over high heat, 5 minutes, turning frequently, until lightly charred on all sides. Remove from grill to 8 individual serving plates. Combine jam and vinegar; mix well and drizzle over figs. Sprinkle with thyme. Serve warm.
1. Gorgonzola or any premium blue-veined cheese.
2. Pair with Mirassou Monterey County Chardonnay or other premium white wine.
3. Nutrition facts are for fresh figs. Calories, sugar and carbohydrates may be slightly higher with dried figs.
NUTRITION FACTS (per serving)
Calories 250 (15% from Fat); Total Fat 4.5g; Saturated Fat 1.5g; Trans Fat -0-g; Cholesterol 35mg; Sodium 800mg; Potassium 440mg; Carbohydrate 38g; Sugar 34g; Dietary Fiber 3g; Protein 16g;
Daily Values: Vitamin A 4%; Vitamin C 4%; Calcium 6%; Iron 6%.
Turkey Sliders with California Pepper Fig Salsa
California Pepper Fig Salsa
Combine Salsa ingredients in medium bowl and stir together. Cover and chill for several hours.
For Sliders, combine turkey, minced dried figs, green onions, herbs and sea salt in medium bowl and mix to combine well. Divide and shape into 12 small, flat burgers. Generously oil grill or barbecue and cook over medium-high heat for 3 to 5 minutes on each side, until done (165 degrees F).
Arrange a few arugula leaves on bottom half of each roll; top with turkey burger and spoon on salsa. Replace tops and secure with toothpicks, if desired. Serve with additional salsa on the side.
Notes: Nutrition Facts are for 1 slider.
Yields: 12 Sliders
Serves: 6 (2 Sliders for Main Dish); 12 (1 Slider for Appetizer)
NUTRITION FACTS (per serving)
Calories 240 (23% from Fat); Total Fat 6g; Saturated Fat 1.5g; Trans Fat -0-g; Cholesterol 40mg; Sodium 340mg; Potassium 390mg; Carbohydrate 35g; Sugar 17g; Dietary Fiber 4g; Protein 12g;
Daily Values: Vitamin A 10%; Vitamin C 30%; Calcium 8%; Iron 15%.
For more recipes and tips, visit www.californiafigs.com, and remember to look forward to the Fresh California Fig season mid-May through December.
About the California Fig Advisory Board and the California Fresh Fig Growers Association
The California Fig Advisory Board and California Fresh Fig Growers Association promote awareness and the use of California-produced dried and fresh fig domestically and internationally. California Fig growers, processors and marketers fund the activities of the industry.
Karla J. Stockli
California Fig Advisory Board
California Fresh Fig Grower Association
Office: 559-243-8600; Mobile 559-281-0440
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