Roasted Fig Salad with Honey–Lavender Vinaigrette
The trick to this recipe is to use a high-quality honey—I like clover or European summer- flower honey. The lavender just barely perfumes the honey and brings out the deep flavors of the figs. I love lavender and have made believers out of many people. If you have never tried lavender before, it’s an herb just like thyme or rosemary, so you can use the leaves or the flowers, or both. I always have a pot of lavender growing (it’s an easy herb to grow), so when a recipe requires some, I just snip the amount I need. (The vinaigrette can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator, covered, up to 5 days.)
- 1 pint green or black fresh figs, stemmed and cut in half
- 2 tablespoons high-quality honey
- 1 tablespoon water
- ¼ cup high-quality honey
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh lavender (or 2 teaspoons dried)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Dash of unseasoned rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons water
- ⅓ cup neutral-flavored oil, such as canola
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4–5 cups baby greens or favorite mix of lettuces
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Place the fig halves, cut side up, on a cooling rack set over a shallow baking pan or on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Whisk together 2 tablespoons honey and 1 tablespoon water to thin out the honey. Brush the figs with the honey mixture and roast until the figs have softened and are slightly caramelized, about 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, place ¼ cup honey and the lavender in a small saucepan. Bring the honey to a simmer and remove from the heat. Allow the lavender to steep for 30 minutes. Strain the honey through a fine-mesh strainer into a small bowl and discard the lavender. Add the lemon juice, vinegar, water and oil, and whisk together. Season with salt and pepper.
- Place the greens on a large platter or individual plates, arrange the figs on top and drizzle the honey vinaigrette over the salad.
- Reprinted with permission from Jewish Cooking for All Seasons by Laura Frankel (Agate Surrey, 2016). Photo © iStockphoto.com/Nikiteev_Konstantin.