Thursday, 11 October 2012

Fresh Fig, Iberico Ham and Mozzarella Salad with Toasted Oktoberfest Boule

Fresh figs stuffed with mozzarella, served on a bed of Iberico ham and with Oktoberfest boule toast

This attractive and incredibly simple salad - representing tastes of Spain, Italy, Germany and the Middle East - was actually prepared from start to finish in the time it took to make the toast. That means that it not only represents a refreshing change for the average dinner menu, it in no way involves any time spent slaving over a hot stove. Iberico ham is a Spanish delicacy and although by no means cheap to buy, it really is absolutely delicious and well worth forking out for as a special treat. These wafer thin slices cost about sixty British pence each (£2.99 for a pack of five slices) - equivalent to around one American dollar per slice.

There's a little bit of a story as to where this idea came from and it's only fair that I give credit where it is due. Figs are something I hadn't eaten in years and it was when I read a friend's Hub Page sharing details of her Fig Puff Pastry Tart that this meal was subsequently devised. If you buy a bag of figs, therefore, you may want to give Claudia's delicious pudding/dessert idea a try.

Slicing the Oktoberfest boule for making toast

Ingredients per Person

2 slices of Oktoberfest boule
3 slices of Iberico ham
3 small fresh figs
2 ounces of buffalo mozzarella (approximately)
Freshly chopped basil to garnish
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Iberico ham is carefully laid on the serving plate


Slice the boule and put it on to toast before carefully laying the slices of Iberico ham on a serving plate that each one represents a bed for a fig.

Fresh figs

Snip any remaining stalk off the top of each fig. Make two cuts at right angles down through the fig, stopping about three-quarters of the way through. Carefully squeeze each one at the bottom to open them like flowers and lay them on the ham beds.

Fresh figs are cut open and laid on the bed of Iberico ham

Cut the mozzarella in to three even sized pieces, just the right size to stuff the figs. Be careful not to cut the pieces too big as arranging them may burst the figs open and spoil presentation.

Mozzarella is cut in to small portions for stuffing figs

Carefully stuff the figs with the mozzarella and garnish with some freshly chopped basil leaves.

Mozzarella is stuffed in to figs and garnished with freshly chopped basil

Lay the toasted Oktoberfest boule slices on the side of the plate. Drizzle everything with extra virgin olive oil (optional), season with a little salt (remember the salt in the ham) and plenty of black pepper.

Oktoberfest boule toast is plated beside the fig and Iberico ham salad

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