Thursday, September 26, 2013

Fig Butter & Arugula Salad

It is believed that figs were one of the first plants to be cultivated by humans. In fact, they may have been cultivated 1,000 years before the ancient grain, wheat! This timeless classic is gaining popularity in recent years as figs are seen either fresh or dried in salads, sandwiches, tarts, and cakes.

 I first fell in love with fresh figs at the Santa Monica farmers market. A local farmer was distributing samples – some plain, some honeyed…all delicious. The unique flavor of figs  – soft and sweet with a bit of a crunch  – adds a delightful surprise to a variety of dishes.

 One large fig comes packed with approximately three grams of dietary fiber. And, in case you haven’t noticed, nutrition experts love talking about fiber.

 Adequate fiber plays an important role in digestive health, it helps to keep our blood sugar steady, and can even help to keep our weight at a happy, healthy place.  Studies also suggest fruits rich in fiber may decrease risk of certain chronic diseases such as, cancer and heart disease. Essentially, figs play a key role in maintaining a healthy diet. During my weekly shopping trip to Trader Joe’s in New York, I came across fig butter which turned my ordinary salad into extraordinary – and immediately took me back to that wonderful day at the Santa Monica Farmers Market.

Arugula + Fig Butter Salad

For Salad:
3 cups arugula
1 cup mini heirloom tomatoes, sliced
½ large cucumber, sliced
½ cup chopped walnuts
1 sprig fresh parsley, chopped

For Dressing:
4 teaspoon fig butter
2 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon  red wine vinegar
Salt & pepper to taste


1. Lay arugula out on a platter.

2. Layer tomatoes, cucumbers, and walnuts on top of arugula.

3. In a small bowl, combine fig butter, olive oil, and vinegar. Mix well.  Add salt and pepper to the dressing.

5. Garnish salad with fresh parsley. Serve


Makes 4 servings.


Enjoy, preferably with those you love.

By our wonderful contributing blogger, Jaime Ruisi!

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