Flavors of Fall Table of Contents
Flavors of Fall is a series consisting of 9 parts.
Figs are a nutrient-dense fall fruit—perfect for pairing with wholesome breakfasts, light salads, savory dinners and sweet desserts.
The fruits are full of fiber and minerals, so try to incorporate them into your seasonal recipes to reap their nutritional benefits.
Figs grow on the Ficus tree, which is native to the Middle East and Mediterranean Europe.
Figs also grow in other areas with a similar climate, including Arkansas, Louisiana, California, Georgia, Oregon, Texas, South Carolina and Washington in the United States, southwestern Canada, northeastern Mexico, and humid areas in South America.
Throughout history, figs have been “the inspiration for poetry, songs, and paintings, heralded for their apparent aphrodisiac and fertility-boosting powers,” according to Whole Living.
Dried figs are available throughout the year, but fall’s fresh figs have a smooth skin and a chewy, sweet flesh. Fresh figs should be plump and tender with a deep, rich color. Their stems should be firm and bruise-free. Figs have a mildly sweet fragrance, but they will begin to smell sour once they begin to spoil.
Wash fresh figs under cool water and remove the stem before slicing and cooking them. Add fresh or roasted figs to oatmeal, yogurt and ice cream, as well as in salads with fresh greens, or stuffed with nuts and cheeses as hors d’oeuvres.
Figs are a good source of dietary fiber, which can promote healthy digestion and help with weight management. Figs also contain a lot of the mineral potassium, which can help to control blood pressure and replenish your electrolyte balance, as well as calcium, which promotes healthy bone density.
Fully-ripened figs contain a lot of antioxidants, so if you have purchased slightly under-ripe figs, keep them on a plate a room temperature for a day or two until they are soft to eat, but not mushy.