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Roasted Fig Cappellacci Recipe from Enzo & Lucia's Chef Angelo

Renata Cardelli
Friday, September 21, 2012

Ahhh, Figs. Figs, figs, figs. Not a favorite of mine. If any of you know my mother, she is a walking produce department. No kidding. Case in point? We’re sitting at my nephews’ football game, and Nonna (aka my mom) pulls out grapes, a couple of apples, and figs! She asks, “Anyone want a fig?” Poor little thing didn’t even get a reply. It seems that no one eats figs. That’s what I thought. So I decided to learn more about the fig.

Well, let me tell you, figs are grossly underrated. Although dried figs are available throughout the year, there is nothing like the unique taste and texture of fresh figs. They are lusciously sweet with a texture that combines the chewiness of their flesh, the smoothness of their skin, and the crunchiness of their seeds. California figs are available from June through September; some European varieties are available through autumn.

When choosing figs, select those that are plump and tender, have a rich, deep color, and are free from bruises and not mushy. Ripe figs have a sweet fragrance. When brought home, ripe figs should not be washed until ready to eat. They should be kept covered in the refrigerator on a paper towel - lined plate, where they will remain fresh for approximately two days. If figs are not yet ripe, it is best to keep them at room temperature, away from direct sunlight.

The fig has many health benefits, as well. It helps lower cholesterol, is high in dietary fiber, and is a great source of fruit calcium, just to name a few.

So when Chef Angelo (Enzo’s son) decided to create the Roasted Fig Cappellacci which is the special this month, I became intrigued. After having had it for dinner one night, I can confidently say that that was one of the BEST ways to eat a fig. The sweet fig combined with the salty prosciutto (Italian dry-cured ham) is a taste sensation. It is then served in a butter, sage, and cinnamon sauce. Y-U-M!

Roasted Fig, Prosciutto, and Goat Cheese Cappellacci in Cinnamon Scented Brown Butter Sage Sauce

2 pints of figs cut in half
1/4 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons of diced prosciutto
3 fresh sage leaves
3 tablespoons of goat cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
salt and pepper
one dozen 2x2 fresh pasta (can be bought at a local pasta shop)

Wash and cut figs in half
Put figs in baking dish, along with diced prosciutto.
Sprinkle 1/4 cup of olive oil over figs
salt and pepper to taste
cover baking dish with aluminum foil
Bake in a 350 oven for 30 minutes.

Drain excess juices from baked fig.
Blend figs in blender
Add 3 tablespoons of goat cheese and 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup of panko break crumbs and mix all ingredients together
Refrigerate for an hour.

After refrigerating mixture for an hour, place two teaspoons of mixture into the 2x2 inch square of fresh pasta, fold over in a triangle and seal the edges.
Cook in boiling water for three minutes.

Cinnamon scented brown butter sage sauce

1/4 stick of butter
5 or 6 sage leaves
1/2 to one teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup of water

Using a sauce pan, melt butter, add sage leaves, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Once butter starts to brown, add 1/4 cup of water. Add the cappellacci and serve.

Cooking tip -

When browning butter, once it starts to foam add water. This will prevent butter from burning.