It’s a rare American child that will eat a fig. This is lucky for parents, because figs are expensive and not to be wasted on the unenthusiastic. Instead of forcing them on our kids, we should all spend some time this month modeling good eating habits for our children by indulging in one of the most divine of fruits.
The late summer fig harvest yields fruit that is sweet as sugar, but still a healthful snack, with good amounts of fiber, potassium and calcium. Look for plump, tender figs with smooth unblemished skin. They are extremely delicate, so keep them refrigerated and covered, and only wash them right before using.
Pair figs with something salty, like cured meat or a sharp cheese. Cut them into slivers and toss in a salad of tender bitter greens and shavings of Parmesan cheese. For a sophisticated, simple dessert, serve a plate of dark chocolate, fresh figs and almonds. Or wrap them in thin slices of bacon, secure with a toothpick, and grill until the bacon is cooked and the figs are brimming with their concentrated sweetness. Or just eat them out of hand.
Larissa Phillips is a cooking instructor and food writer for Parenthood.com. Email her at FeedingYourFamily@Parenthood.com. Check out Larissa’s blog Mothership Meals & Satellite Saucers and discover how to get through dinner without having a breakdown!
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