We’ve just come home from a blissful holiday in the Dordogne in France. We return each year to the same crumbling yet totally idyllic farmhouse, complete with magnolias, vines and a tree dripping with figs in the garden.
Every time we go I roll out this same starter – it’s as easy as pie (never understood that saying – pie is actually a lot of hard work!!) and goes down extremely well. I use goat’s cheese, but am aware that some dislike the taste, so you could swop in something like brie or camembert.
8 ripe figs (the larger the better!)
1 roll of goats cheese (the kind with the rind)
8 slices of parma ham
1 bag rocket salad
50g pine nuts
Heat the oven to around 200 degrees
Cut through the middle of the figs lengthways from top to bottom but leave the bottom joined so they open almost in half.
Slice the goats cheese into 8 pieces and put a slice into each fig
Wrap a slice of parma ham round each fig, then place them all on a baking tray and bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
Heat a frying pan over a medium heat and quickly toast the pine nuts, shaking regularly so they don’t burn
Mix a little balsamic and olive oil in a jug or jar.
Place a little rocket salad on 8 serving plates, then remove the figs from the oven and put one on each plate, before sprinkling with pine nuts and drizzling over the dressing to serve