I have never been passionate about figs in their raw state and, yes, I have eaten them in Italy, perfectly ripe and straight off the tree. But roast them and combine with honey ice-cream and I am a happy convert Take care that the honey you use is not too herbal-some of them are so heavily scented they are more suited to the bathroom than the kitchen.
Well ahead, make the Vanilla Ice-cream mixture as described • Melt the honey in a bowl set over boiling water until liquid • Pour all but a couple of tablespoons of the honey into the ice-cream mixture and chum in the ice-cream maker until frozen.
About 20 minutes before serving, preheat the oven to maximum and remove the ice-cream from the freezer. It should be soft enough to scoop easily when the figs come out of the oven.
Sprinkle a baking tray with a few drops of water to prevent burning and sticking. Arrange the figs on the tray so they do not touch and roast for 10 minutes until the skin starts to brown.
Remove from the oven. As soon as the figs are cool enough to handle, make two cross cuts down into each fig to about half the depth. Squeeze them in the middle to open them at the top. Put a teaspoon of the reserved honey into each and return to the oven for 5 minutes.
Put a scoop of the ice-cream in the middle of each plate and arrange 4 figs around, or put
© 1993 Alastair Little. All rights reserved.