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Falling into Figs

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Falling into Figs
Text by Alice Ravenel Huger Smith / Photo by Rush Jagoe

As autumn approaches, Charlestonians’ focus shifts from days at the beach and avoiding the muggy, humid weather to days of school, enjoying sunny, breezy afternoons. Along with this mentality shift comes a shift in ingredients and types of food; a move from lighter and refreshing fare to heartier, dishes that act as comfort foods. One of the staple ingredients for the fall season is one of the oldest foods known to man: the fig.

Considered to be the sweetest of fruits, the fig originated in northern Asia Minor thousands of years ago. The fig migrated to the Americas via the Spanish in 1520. High in potassium, iron, fiber and plant calcium, these succulent fruits are a prime crop for the Charleston area due to the moist climate. Charleston restaurants including EVO, Trattoria Lucca, Tristan, and Bacco are all currently featuring dishes on their menu that include the fig tastefully. Bacco, for instance, is featuring a fig crostata appetizer, a light pastry crust layered with mascarpone cheese and then baked with fresh figs, gorgonzola and pancetta that will truly stimluate the palate and prepare the guest for the meal to come.

A classic fig recipe is fig preserves, which is very easy to do and can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.

Fig Jam
Fresh Fig Ice Cream