Roasted sweet potatoes and fresh figs (V)
Look what a jewell of a recipe I came across today on the Guardian website: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2011/sep/16/sweet-potato-figs-tuna-fishcake-recipes
One more prove that culinary gourmet pursuits do not need to be a complicated endeavour! Smart, simple and fresh is the way!
Yotam Ottolenghi writes a weekly column The New Vegetarian in the Guardian weekend Saturday magazine. Together with Sami he is the author of the Ottolenghi Cookbook, published by Ebury Press in 2008. Yotam now runs four different branches, that offer ‘singular and diverse’ food experiences in Notting Hill, Islington, Belgravia and Kensington. http://www.ottolenghi.co.uk/locations/ His food philosophy can be summed up in the following words: “Our food is familiar and straight forward, yet highly innovative…We are highly aware of how unusual it is, in our time, to find food that is closer to the source, uncomplicated, unadulterated, emanating from genuine instincts. This ideas of simplicity is one of Ottolenghi’s basic principles.”
Here is what he has to say about this fantastic-looking and even better tasting recipe:
“This unusual combination of a fresh fruit and a roasted root vegetable is one of our most popular dishes right now, but it wholly depends on the figs being sweet and moist and perfectly ripe. The balsamic reduction is very effective here, both for the look and for rounding up the flavours. To save you from making it, look for balsamic cream or glaze. Serves four.
4 small sweet potatoes (1kg)
75ml olive oil
Coarse sea salt and black pepper
40ml balsamic vinegar (not a premium aged grade)
20g caster sugar
12 spring onions, halved lengthways and cut into 4cm long segments
1 red chilli, thinly sliced
6 fresh, ripe figs (240g), quartered
150g soft goat’s cheese, crumbled (optional)
Heat the oven to 220C/425F/gas mark 7. Wash the sweet potatoes, cut in half lengthways, then cut each half lengthways into three long wedges. Mix with three tablespoons of oil, two teaspoons of salt and some pepper. Lay the wedges skin side down on a baking tray, and roast for 25 minutes, until soft but not mushy. Remove and leave to cool down.
Put the balsamic vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for two to four minutes, until it thickens. Be sure to remove the pan from the heat when the vinegar is still runnier than honey as it will thicken as it cools (if it does get too thick to drizzle, stir in a drop of water before serving).
Arrange the sweet potatoes on a serving plate. Heat the remaining oil in a medium saucepan and add the spring onions and chilli. Fry on a medium heat for four to five minutes, stirring often so the chilli does not catch, then spoon over the sweet potatoes. Dot the fig quarters around and about, then drizzle over the balsamic reduction. Serve at room temperature, with the cheese scattered on top, if using.”
For more information about his food and restaurants, please visit Yotam’s website and blog: