Saturday, July 17, 2010

My inaugural post; chocolate dipped figs

Hello, and welcome to my blog. If all goes as planned, I'll be posting recipes and photos of food. The reality is that sometimes I forget to measure things and to write down my measurements, and that I sometimes forget to take pictures of my food before I eat. But we'll see how this goes.

I'd also like to briefly explain my blog title. Texas Everbearing is a variety of fig; specifically, it's a subtype of Brown Turkey. It's the most common type of fig tree found here in Austin, and it's what's been producing and inspiring a great deal of what I've been eating over the last few weeks. Now that you know what Texas Everbearing is, the pun becomes obvious, and perhaps a bit groan-inducing. However, in my defense, the other (better) names I thought of had already been taken - and not even for food blogs, which really irks me.

Now let's get to the real reason we're here - the food!

Chocolate dipped figs

~1 lb figs, about 15 medium-sized
6 oz dark/semisweet chocolate, use what you like
1 pinch ground cloves (maybe 1/2 tsp, see what I mean?)
1/4 cups chopped pistachios (optional)

I got the figs from the tree in my front yard. If you don't have a fig tree or a friend with a fig tree, you may be able to find some fresh figs at a farmer's market. Failing that, you can used dried figs, but it won't be the same.

Rinse the figs and gently pat them dry with paper towels or a dish towel (skip this step if using dried figs.) Line a baking sheet or flattish container with parchment or wax paper. I managed to separate most of the figs from their stems during harvesting, so I stuck toothpicks in them to use as handles.

Break the chocolate into pieces and put in a microwave-safe container. Microwave about 45 seconds at 50% power, stir, and repeat till melted. It may be tempting to lick your spoon or spatula, but as you may or may not know, you don't want to get any moisture in the chocolate, or it'll seize. If you must lick the spatula, grab a fresh one for the next round of stirring.

Once the chocolate is melted, stir in the cloves, and start dipping. This is the fun part. Dip the fig in the chocolate, gently swirl it around till it's coated, pull it out and let the excess drip off, and then set it on the parchment paper. If you're using pistachios, sprinkle them over the fig. Repeat until all the figs are coated (obvious instruction is obvious.) Depending on your climate, you may want to put them in the fridge to set. Since I live in Austin, I put them in the fridge and keep them there.

Since these are fresh figs, they won't keep long, maybe two days. In my house they don't last that long anyway, so spoilage is not an issue.

Now let's pretend that I know how to take pictures:

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