My mom is going to the farmers market in my hometown in France, each Wednesday and each Saturday morning to buy her fresh fruits and veggies.
During the figs season she would come back home and dig in the figs before even putting all her groceries away.
I can clearly picture her in the kitchen facing the window and eating greedily a couple of purple figs. She would not peel the skin off, just wash it and devour it !
I know as I have been witnessing her many times when I was living in France.
How can she like so much a fruit full of countless fine-grains with a such thick skin ? I don’t remember even trying it as the look and texture were not appealing to me at all.
|Municipal Market in Cyprus|
I am sure she kept this seasonal habit but this year I have not been able to witness her as I now live in Cyprus. Instead I witness my husband having the same craving.
We would go for a walk in the neighbourhood at evening, sit down somewhere on the top of a hill watching down Limassol at nightfall and discussing about the boats we would see offshore…
On the way back we would make a detour via the big fig tree next to the playground to check it out. Nati would look at each branch and pick few that he would eat on the spot !
Still not interested in figs at this point until I finally decide to taste one : the skin did not seem so thick and the flesh not so grany…
Then I started to put purple figs in salads, make figs jams and, the best for last : Figs Tarts !
What do I like about this recipe ? It’s a tasty one of course but as well an easy one with so many possible variations: Apricots instead of figs, hazelnuts powder instead of almond powder…The variation with hazelnuts powder came out after this man gave me a handful of hazelnuts.
I met him in the old town of Limassol. I was wandering with my camera. He was wondering why I was shooting an old stone staircase going up nowhere... I came in his workshop, intrigued to see him cracking hazelnuts with a hammer!...
I wish I could speak greek, I would have loved to talk to him. I love stories!
Serves 4 to 6
- 200g all-purpose flour
- 100g salted cold butter, cut into small cubes
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla-flavoured sugar
- 2 tablespoons powdered white sugar
- 100ml iced water
- 70g almond powder
- 9-10 purple figs cut lengthwise twice
- 2 tablespoons powdered brown sugar
- Pour the flour and the butter in a bowl. Mix rapidly together with your fingertips to obtain a lumpy mixture.
- Add the salt, vanilla-flavoured sugar and white sugar. Mix with a spoon.
- Gradually add the water and bring the dough together with your hands. Shape the dough into a firm and rough ball. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes at least.
- Preheat oven to 220°C.
- Roll out the dough (medium thickness). Fill a 20 cm tart mold with the dough. Cut off excess. Lightly prick the dough with a fork.
- Pour the almond powder and spread it evenly all over the tart with the back of a tablespoon. Creatively top with the quarters of fig and sprinkle evenly with the brown sugar.
- Bake for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 210°C. Bake for about 20-30 minutes until the figs are slightly golden Brown. Let the tart cool down before cutting.