I went into the garden today and I noticed we had a huge crop of Black Mission figs. I think I gathered probably two full baskets. We had some last minute guests come over this afternoon, and I decided to put the figs I just picked to good use. Since they were coming over for tea, I thought that bite size appetizers would be in order. I stuffed the figs with camembert and some thyme from the garden. I then rested each fig on a bed of puff pastry and baked them in the oven.
A lot of my cooking is my own improvisation. If you know what flavors combinations work well together, it’s easy to come up with new recipes when you’re in a pinch. Figs stuffed with camembert is a classic combination, and really, what doesn’t puff pastry go with?
Unfortunately, I didn’t have any ready-made puff pastry, so I had to make some myself. The result isn’t as beautiful as Julia’s from Mélanger, but it also didn’t take six hours to make! I have to give a special shout out to Julia for taking the effort to make pâte feuilletée at home.
I think our guests enjoyed the little bite-sized fig appetizers. You could make a similar dish with many other fruits, so experiment and have fun!
1. Info for Camembert Stuffed Fig Puffs
- Cook Time: unavailable
- Total Time: unavailable
- Servings: 6
- Calories: unavailable
2. Ingredients for Camembert Stuffed Fig Puffs
- 12 Black Mission figs
- 1 teaspoon oil
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 teaspoon white vinegar
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 21 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold (2 sticks of butter + 5 tablespoons)
- 4 tablespoons horseradish mustard (or regular)
- 1/4 cup agave nectar
- 1 pinch white pepper
- 6 sprigs fresh red thyme, halved
- 1 small camembert cheese, diced, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon curly parsley (optional), finely chopped
- Lightly oil the bowl of your food processor with a silicone brush. Then mix the flour, salt and 4 tablespoons of diced cold butter. Add the cold water and vinegar and pulse until the dough is formed. Do NOT over-mix. Transfer the dough to a large bowl lined with plastic wrap and encase the dough with it. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Roll the dough into a 10-inch square.
- Place the remaining blocks of butter between 2 large sheets of parchment paper. Roll the butter into a 6-inch square.
- Place both squares in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes. If you don’t have time, place in the freezer for 15 minutes.
- Place the square of butter onto the dough so that the corners of the butter are rotated 45° away from the corners of the dough. In other words, the butter should look like a diamond placed inside of the square of dough. Fold the corners of the dough in towards the straight edges of the butter. The butter shuold be totally enveloped.
- Roll the dough into a long 18" x 6-inch rectangle. Fold the dough into thirds and roll one more time re-creating an 18" x 6-inch rectangle. The puff pastry dough is ready.
- Create 12 3-1/2-inch puff pastry squares. Stack the squares, placing little squares of parchment paper between them. Chill in the refrigerator until you’re ready to assemble the figs.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- For the camembert: Gather 12 cubes of camembert. Stick a half sprig of thyme into one side of the cheese.
- For the figs: Wash the figs and pat them dry. Make a cross incision starting from the stem of the figs, cutting three-quarters of the way to the root.
- Assembly time: Place a silicon mat or a sheet of parchment paper on a baking tray. Place the puff pastry squares onto the silicon mat. Spread about 1 teaspoon of mustard in the center of each puff pastry. Place the figs onto the dough. Drizzle each fig with about a teaspoon of agave nectar. Sprinkle with pepper.
- Bake for 12 minutes at 400°F until the puff pastry is puffed and flaky, then lower the temperature to 375°F, add a cube of camembert in the fig cavity and bake for another 4 minutes. The cheese should soften but not melt completely and the puff pastry dough should be nice and golden with juicy, pinkish fig syrup in the inside.
- Before serving, garnish with some parsley if you like.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.
- Bon appétit!