In one of the far corners of this Sunday’s Chicago Tribune, I found a recipe for something called fig toasties. It’s really just slices of sourdough toast slathered with French cheese and topped with delicious fresh figs that have been cooked in butter and balsamic vinegar. The hook for me was the fresh figs. But, alas, my local Mariano’s had run out of the sweet fruit, so I settled for a new jar of fig preserves. I couldn’t find the recipe’s Brillat Savarin, but I found a similar French, cow’s milk, triple-creme cheese as a substitute.
(adapted from The Chicago Tribune)
4 slices sourdough or other rustic bread
2 oz. ripe triple-creme cheese, such as Brillat Savarin, at room temperature
4 fresh ripe figs
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
1 pinch crushed red pepper
1. Pop bread in the toaster and toast golden. Spread with cheese. Cut each slice into 3. Arrange on a serving tray.
2. Slice away bottom of each fig. Slice each fig crosswise into 3 circles.
3. Heat butter in a wide skillet over medium heat. Add fig slices in a single layer. Sizzle, shaking pan now and then, until pink flesh turns tan, about 1 minute per side. Drizzle on balsamic vinegar. Scatter on pepper. Sizzle until deeply colored, about 1 minute more per side.
4. Set one fig slice on each cheese toast.
Makes 12 servings