12 September 2012

Honeyed Fig & Gorgonzola Phyllo Cups

Fig season is finally here!  Though it seemed to come later than usual, much to my multi-month annoyance.  Oh, sweet and tender fruit of summer and fall.  From their light honey sweetness to the slight seedy crunch back to the tender skin...they are all goodness from the inside out (or outside in and back again).  To celebrate their deliciousness, I bring you one of my all time favorites in these delightful little phyllo cups.  Food for the fingers as well as the mouth!

This is the dish from which my impatience for fig season was rooted.  Why?  Simply because I've been waiting (and waiting...and waiting!) to make these tempting little cups.  If you ever find yourself scratching your head to figure out what to bring to a dinner party, this is a great time to stop scratching.  This amuse-bouche is always given rave reviews.  These pictures are from a dinner party last week in which they were scarfed down so quickly, I couldn't even sneak in a picture of them post-oven (so pre-oven will have to suffice)!  

The concept is incredibly simple, yet the result is quite elegant.  Tender figs and mild Gorgonzola are served paired up in a light, crispy, butter phyllo shell with a little walnut for extra texture and a drizzle of sweet honey to top it all off.  Yum!  Just be sure that you get a good Gorgonzola rather than blue cheese as the later tends to overpower the flavor of the fig.  After all, it's fig season we're celebrating here, not cheese season.  (I mean...it's always cheese season, right?)

I just love little bites of heaven, don't you?  

Honeyed Fig & Gorgonzola Phyllo Cups (24 cups)
  • 1 package phyllo dough or cups, thawed
  • 1/4 c butter (if you're making your own cups)
  • 12 figs
  • 4-6 oz Gorgonzola
  • walnuts
  • honey
First, make your phyllo cups.  *If you're using pre-made cups, skip down to the next paragraph.*  Remove dough from the refrigerator and let sit for 30 minutes to come to room temperature.  This will make it easier to handle.  When the dough is room temp, melt the butter and preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  Lay one sheet of phyllo dough on a cutting board.  With a pastry brush, lightly brush the single sheet with butter.  Top with a second phyllo sheet and butter again.  Continue until you have five layers of dough and finish with a buttering.  Cut the dough into 2 inch squares and gently press into a mini muffin tin.  Bake for 8-10 minutes until cups are lightly golden and crispy.  These babies keep great for a week or so in a Ziploc bag, so I recommend making a few muffin trays.  

Leave the oven at 325 degrees.  Remove the stems and cut the figs in half.  Place skin side down on a baking sheet and drizzle with honey.  Roast for about 12 minutes, until the fruits are soft and giving off its juices.  Remove and let cool for 5 minutes.

Crumble the Gorgonzola and roughly chop the walnuts.  When the figs are cool enough to handle, remove to a cutting board.  Quarter each roasted fig half so you end up with small cubes of fruit.  You may need to cut them a little smaller depending on how big your figs are.

To assemble, place two pieces of fig and a walnut in each phyllo cup.  Top with a few crumbles of blue cheese (they will hold it all together after they're melted).  Place back in the oven for 5-7 minutes until the cheese is melted.  Remove and let cool for a minute before transferring to a serving plate.  Finish with a drizzle of honey, serve warm and watch them disappear!

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