Fig Trees Figs & My Kitchen

by | Appetizers & Tapas, Dessert, Seafood

Fig leaves for wrap-steaming, fresh figs for sweet or savory dishes and why my kitchen always needs a fig tree in my yard. 

My Fig Trees

Fig Trees

In three of the most significant homes in my life, childhood, the first home I bought as a single mom for my four children, and my current home, all have had a fig tree. 

The ancient saying about a fig tree, “If a Fig Tree doesn’t bare fruit in three years, cut it down”. 

This saying began to signify the importance of baring fruit with my life, be my best self, grow into something I am proud to be. 

The two fig trees in my current home did not bare fruit the first five years after I planted them. Every autumn I decided it was time to cut them down, though I loved the privacy their huge leaves offered. 

The pandemic hit. I began to use every fertile part of my yard to grow things, cultivate new life while the world was looking rather grim. Autumn of 2020 I just couldn’t cut the trees down, not now. 

Spring of 2021, I tried something new with the trees. While they were just beginning to show buds in the early spring, I tried to feed them. 

I had never fed any of my other fig trees, nor did my parents in my childhood home. The trees just produced beautifully. My current tree was not. 

As the spring of 2021 turned into summer, I couldn’t believe all the magnificent little green balls beginning to form all along the branches of my fig trees!

By mid summer and again in autumn, both fig trees produced lots and lots of fruit! Sweet, juicy, luscious fruit. 

My fig trees just needed to be fed in a way the others never needed. Aren’t we sometimes like that? 

Figs

Fig Leaves

While there are also ancient stories about the things (wink), fig leaves were used to wrap around, I never knew that fig leaves were also perfect for wrapping around food!

Fig leaves, when wrapped around fish, as you can see in my Fish In A Fig Leaf recipe, impart an essence likened to coconut, and keeps moisture in the item being cooked inside.

Fish in a fig leaf
Fish In A Fig Leaf

Fig Leaf Debut On Television

On a television show, a new cooking program I recently filmed in (releases in summer of 2022), I prepared my very favorite Fish In A Fig Leaf for all the world to see!

I made a luscious spicy, sweet and sour fig sauce to layer on top of the salmon to be wrapped inside of the fig leaf. Just 10-minutes inside a hot oven and the salmon cooked to perfection. Wowed the judges and I am certain will wow you when this program airs!

Food Channel Presentation
Food Channel Presentation

Fig Leaf Tea

Fig leaves also make a delightful, delicate flavored tea. The tea smells and tastes a little like coconut. I even found there to be a slightly slippery texture when dipping my fingers in the tea and rubbing them together. Oil?

Fig leaf tea has recently been getting lots of rave reviews for its anti-diabetic properties and health aids in dealing with bronchial issues. 

Fig leaf tea though, is not new. In ancient times, the countries surrounding the Mediterranean were knowledgable about the health properties in the fig leaves. 

This, though, was new news to me which made me glad I never cut down my fig trees just because they weren’t ready to bare fruit!

figs in my kitchen
Figs In My Kitchen
goat cheese stuffed figs with almonds
Goat Cheese Stuffed Figs with Almonds

Fig Tree To Table Abundance

I will admit, when my fig trees began to bare fruit, I was so excited about the abundance that very few made it to the table!

I never bothered to wash them (since I don’t spray insecticide on them), but just popped them in my mouth and enjoyed every plump juicy fig I could eat! Then… my mind began to race with new recipes I wanted to try with my figs. 

Cooking with figs
Cooking With Figs

Figs Are Not Fruit!

What? Of course they are. Nope! A fig is a flower. A freak of nature in which the flower became an introvert and grew on the inside of the protective shell, we know as the skin. 

There are even fig wasps, yep, that’s what they are called and their purpose in life is to pollinate the figs. 

While many of the figs purchased in the store were not pollinated naturally by fig wasps, they were instead sprayed with plant hormones, therefore tricking the plant into producing ripened figs. I know my figs are the real deal. 

My figs, do not get tricked! My figs have fig wasps, busy about their business. When I first started to gather by figs and saw wasps trying to eat them, or so I thought, I shooed them away. Then I discovered what they were actually doing. Now I am most respectful of the wasps. 

Figs Are Flowers
Figs Are Flowers

Figs In My Kitchen

I could boast and boast about all the fabulous recipes I have created with my figs, but instead, I will simply show you; share with you recipes you will not find anywhere else. Why? Because I Created Them!

Fig Bruschetta & Pecan Yeast Bread
Fig Bruschetta & Pecan Yeast Bread
Almond and Oat Fig Tart
Almond and Oat Fig Tart
Fig and Walnut Rum Pie
Fig and Walnut Rum Pie
Moroccan Rice with Dried Figs
Moroccan Rice with Dried Fruit
Fig leaves for wrap steaming, fresh figs for sweet or savory dishes and why my kitchen always needs a fig tree in my yard.
Fish Roasted In A Fig Leaf

Fig Recipes

Recipes to these newly created dishes can be found here at Whisk and Dine, a Fig Finale Dish I also prepared on The Great American Recipe with PBS!

My tree will return again next summer and I too will be busy creating new recipes with its return!

 

My Muffin Madness

 

In my family, I’ve always been known as the ‘Muffin Queen’. Out of necessity, I created muffins for breakfast, lunch, on the go snacks, sometimes dinner and a sweet yet healthyish treat for dessert!

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Doran Upton
Doran Upton
9 months ago

What beautiful food you make Robin and I love that it comes from your back yard .

 

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