21 September 2007

Grilled figs & laurel leaves

{FIGUES GILLE AUX FEUILLES DE LAURIER} I am proud to say that this is my 1st entry for ‘SUGAR HIGH FRIDAYS’!! Which is ‘the international sweet tooth blogging extravaganza’ and, as the founder Jennifer (of The Domestic Goddess blog) put it, ‘your best excuse to make something sweet and different, at least once a month’.  No encouragement needed on my part!

This months theme (chosen by Ivonne of Cream Puffs in Venice blog ) is the FIG – a beautiful and delicious little flower…. I know it’s like the aubergine/eggplant situation, you thought you were eating a vegetable and it turns out to be a big berry, and now you find out that figs are really flowers – who made up these rules!

As I love the taste of figs on their own I thought I would make a simple desert I once tried, that gives president to the fig while adding the lovely perfume of laurel leaves (aka bay leaves) , a hint of pepper with a velvet covering of brown sugar and rich olive oil.

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to Ma.gnoliaAdd to TechnoratiAdd to FurlAdd to Newsvine


  • 6 figs (I use large purple figs)
  • 14 fresh laurel leaves (aka bay leaves) 
  • 4 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • mixed ground pepper (white, green, red, black peppercorns)

Fig preparation

  1. Preheat the oven : on GRILL mode 180°C (350°F), with the oven rack placed near the top.
  2. Wash the figs and remove the small stems. Next make two deep cuts into each fig in the form of a cross – the cut should be more than 3/4 the way through the fig. Place the figs in a baking dish.
  3. Now generously sprinkle the centre of each fig with ground mixed pepper, followed by the brown sugar.
  4. Next put one fresh laurel leaf (bay leaf) in the centre of each fig, and arrange the rest around the baking dish close to the figs.
  5. Finally lightly drizzle the olive oil in and around the figs.
  6. Grill the figs in the oven for 8 minutes – make sure that they are close enough to the grill for the brown sugar to melt but not too close that the laurel leaves will burn.
  7. Remove and serve immediately.

NOTE: I recommend using FRESH laurel (bay) leaves for this recipe as the dried variety does not give the same fragrant perfume, plus the leaves turn brown very quickly and can burn. The recipe is nice served with crème anglaise (vanilla cream). For more information on figs


  1. sognatrice Says:

    What an interesting idea! Our figs are done for the season, so I’ll have to file this one away….

  2. Erika (SWEET PEA) Says:

    Oh no!!! Well it is something else to look forward to for next year 🙂 We can still buy figs here as they are all imported (France, Turkey etc) – I normally don’t like buying imported fruits & veggies, but don’t have much of a choice here. Fig trees do not like the Swiss weather!!! speak soon

  3. MA Says:

    Well, we just happened to buy some figs as ’tis the season in Canada so guess what we will be doing this weekend!! Interesting that the fig is a flower and so that is a revelation! I would not have tried to make them into a sweet but love the idea to do a savoury twist with the laurel leaves. Great idea as usual. The photo is very realistic as well.

  4. Ivonne Says:

    Mmmm … I love that you combined figs and laurel! I wish I could find fresh laurel here in Toronto. What an elegant and beautiful dessert.

    Thanks so much for taking part in SHF #35!

  5. Kristan Says:

    I enjoyed your eggplant recipe so much that I’m excited to see you take a similar oven concept to the desert table. I really enjoy figs with a blue cheese after a meal and a glass of either red or desert wine. I imagine the crème anglaise and the bay leaf make a suitable substitute for the cheese. But please, let me have my wine!

    Looking forward to trying this one. Great pictures again. The Canadian culinary scene is benefiting from your efforts.

  6. Erika (SWEET PEA) Says:

    MA : Glad to hear that the Canadian fig season and my recipe conincided!!!
    The smell of the loral leaves baking in the oven is just wonderful. Let me know how they turn out.

    IVONNE : Thanks for your note. It has been a real pleasure taking part in SHF #35 – I am already looking forward to the next topic! I think you can find fresh laurel leaves in asian food stores in Toronto, let me know if you have luck.

    KRISTAN : This recipe is simple like the eggplant, and great if your are having people around for dinner… quick & easy, looks pretty, and the kitchen smells wonderful while your guests wait! No worries re the wine, you cannot deprive a person of the essentials in life 🙂

  7. Olivier Says:

    The laurel leaves with their very subtle perfume and the caramelized sugar together with the figues…. I am there! What a nice smell in the kitchen! I would like the figue season to last longuer!

  8. Erika (SWEET PEA) Says:

    How sweet of you to leave me a comment while you are working till all hours… were you day dreaming about food 😉
    Perhaps we can pick up a few at the market this weekend before there are no more!!! tmmt jtt

  9. anjie joon Says:

    omg! what a gorgeous photo! i just love figs so much. and i just discovered your blog ~ it’s wonderful!

  10. Erika (SWEET PEA) Says:

    ANJIE : hi, thanks you for stopping by 🙂 and for leaving such a nice comment. It took me a while to get this photo but was very pleased in the end! I just checked out your blog and it is wonderful, so many interesting things to read + love the deign pieces your feature… I will be reading for a while. Look forward to being in touch

  11. marye Says:

    thank you for visiting my blog! I love figs, and i have enjoyed looking at all the recipes…
    Your photos are fantastic!

  12. Erika (SWEET PEA) Says:

    MARYE : it is always nice to find new foodie bloggers with common interests. Look forward to reading your future posts! I think I may try making chocolate dipped figs next time – if it works with strawberries… then why not figs 🙂

  13. Anh Says:

    this is really interesting. I agree with you that fresh bay leaves have so much more flavours than the dried ones! Great post!

  14. […] Grilled Figs with Laurel Leaves from Erika of Sweet Pea. From a blog named after my favourite flower comes a lovely dessert featuring my favourite herb. […]

  15. Erika Says:

    ANH: hi, thanks for leaving a note. I tried the recipe with dried bay leaves and it just wasn’t the same… you really need the fresh leaves to get that beautiful perfume.

    CREAM PUFFS IN VENICE: Congrats on a great #35 SHF!! I couldn’t believe the variety of recipes everyone came up with. Looking forward to the next round-up 🙂

  16. I was craving figs yesterday – this is just wonderful, Erika!

  17. Erika (SWEET PEA) Says:

    PATRICIA : hi, I get cravings like this as well. I hope where you live you can still get figs, as the season here is Geneva is officially over (and well dried figs are just not the same). Am off to check your blog.

  18. […] Did you like this brief introduction? Find out about it in full detail here. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: