Grilled Figs with Creamy Honeyed Ricotta and Almonds (Serves 6)
A recipe from Rancho La Puerta
½ cup ricotta cheese
½ cup cream cheese (See note)
4 tbsp honey, plus more to taste
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp pure vanilla extract or anise- or fruit-flavored liqueur, or a combination of the two (optional)
18 ripe figs
1 tsp olive oil
¼ cup toasted almonds
1. In a blender or food processor, puree the ricotta, cream cheese, honey, lemon juice, and vanilla, if desired, until perfectly smooth. Taste and add more honey or vanilla to taste – the creams should have lots of flavor. For the finest texture, press the cream through a fine-mesh sieve.
2. Clean the figs with a dampened paper towel, pat dry, and rub with the olive oil. Skewer and grill over medium heat for 3 minutes, or until heated through and lightly roasted. If you prefer, the figs may be wrapped in foil packets and cooked, turning several times, over the flames or tucked in the coals. This will take about 5 minutes.
3. Split almost in half and top with 1 tbsp of the honeyed ricotta. Serve warm with a few almonds scattered on each plate.
Note: For a thicker, creamier texture, add up to ¼ cup more cream cheese.
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