Black mission figs
This member of the mulberry family has been documented as a food source for more than 11,000 years. These figs were first cultivated in ancient Egypt.
One of my favorite seasonal foods, black mission figs are recognized by their deep purple skin and deep red flesh. Incredibly sweet, they are excellent in both raw and cooked preparations.
Use these figs to make homemade fig bars or a fig preserve, incorporate them into a salad, or chop and mix them with steamed rice or quinoa.
This week I prepared grilled goat cheese figs as the Fix of the Week on B2.
Packed with nutrients, black mission figs are an excellent source of dietary fiber and protein.
They’re currently available from Avila and Sons Farm, based in Hanford in the San Joaquin Valley, as well as other select growers at the weekly Saturday Santa Barbara, Sunday Camino Real, Tuesday Santa Barbara and Wednesday Solvang farmers’ markets. Price averages $6 per basket with discounts on bulk purchase.
Pineapple heirloom tomato
This tomato possesses a stunning variegated skin and flesh that reminds me of a sunset. The splash of orange, yellow, red and pink delivers quite the presentation on the plate.
Delivering a nice sweet flavor, this low-acid variety is excellent in a salad, including caprese, and produces a uniquely flavored and colored salsa when blended with lime juice, red onion, cilantro, Serrano chilies and salt. These tomatoes are ideal for slicing thick and using to top a sandwich or burger.
Grown by a number of local farmers, they can be found at the weekly Saturday Santa Barbara, Tuesday Santa Barbara and Wednesday Solvang farmers market. Certified organic is available. Price averages $4 per pound.
Sun-dried Tomato Chèvre
Only available seasonally, this chèvre delivers nice tangy notes, with hints of sun-dried tomato throughout. I love to crumble some over my scramble egg in the morning, or use it as an addition to avocado toast with spicy radish sprouts.
You can crumble this over a mixed green salad or on top of a turkey sandwich. From the Drake Family Farm goat farm to the kitchen, this small batch cheese is a great find at the Saturday Santa Barbara farmers’ market weekly. Price is $6 per 6 ounce container.