TC readers you are uber lucky today as I’ve managed to persuade Caroline Taylor – Swan Valley Humane Food Ambassador to share with us an exclusive recipe of hers in the lead up to her role as the MC at this year’s most fabulous foodie event in Perth – the Entwined in the Valley Degustation Dinner. Which by the way there are still tickets to! Click on the below image to book yours now 🙂
My first experience with the kind of food that makes you stop and go ‘wowsers!’ was at Lamont’s in The Swan Valley. The dish in question, was a stunning baked Swan Valley fig grown by Paula Hoffman, wrapped in prosciutto and stuffed with blue cheese. I was 17 so this was gourmet beyond belief and the flavours literally danced in my mouth.
My take on this dish is vegetarian and an absolute go-to once the local fig season kicks off. What better way to showcase the Swan Valleys abundant produce than a simple, flavoursome bruschetta?
I’ve replaced the blue cheese with Caprino goat’s curd which we make at Taylor’s Café. Curd has a softer flavour than blue, but feel free to use feta or blue cheese if goat’s curds not your thing. The Vinocotto we use is produced widely in the Valley and off-sets the sweet and savoury nature of the dish.
Swan Valley figs are to die for, especially if you can get your hands on the dark purple variety! For the carnivorously minded you can add free-range bacon and or eggs.
Swan Valley Grilled Fig, Goats Curd & Vinocotto Bruschetta
The recipe serves two:
- 6 Swan Valley figs, halved
- 1 Tbsn salted butter, 1 Tbsn cooking oil
- 4 slices crusty white bread
- 200g goats curd (or any salty soft cheese you like)
- 2 handfuls roquette dressed in a bit of EV olive oil and fresh lemon
- 100 ml Swan Valley Vinocotto
- Bring a medium fry pan to a steady heat (not smoking)
- Add butter and oil then place halved figs flesh down to caramelise for 1-2 min either side, set aside.
- Toast bread, Butter to taste
- Place toast slightly layered on two plates
- Add one handful of dressed roquette in the middle of the toast, creating a bit of height
- Crumble cheese evenly over the toast and roquette
- Place grilled figs around the toast evenly on each plate
- Drizzle with Vinocotto & serve immediately
A huge thanks to Caroline for sharing this mouth-watering recipe for us, but there’s one final, and very important part of this dish we’re missing… the wine!! So what wine would the TC recommend to perfectly compliment those tasty figs and ingredients..?
Red wines to match with fig dishes
I am so glad Caroline wanted to share this particular recipe because they match really well with Shiraz, which is one of the grape varietals that simply thrives in the Swan Valley. I recently tried the Pinelli Estate 2015 La Tavola Shiraz (which picked up a Gold Medal at the Swan Valley Wine Show) and I think this would compliment the brushetta beautifully!
Along these lines, the Oakover Clockwork 2015 Shiraz (which also won gold!) would complete this mighty fine starter with ease.
If you’re after something not of the Shiraz variety, then try a Malbec the juiciness and fine tannins on the palate will go down quite nicely with this dish; try RiverBank Estate’s current vintage.
White wines to match with fig dishes
I would suggest something like Olive Farm Wines Traminer – the slight sweetness will bring out the fruit and let the goats curd shine. This food & wine match would make for a lovely starter/appetiser or even as a more savoury type dessert.
If you’re not keen on the sweetness, then try Olive Farm’s Viogner, personally I love this wine, but this white varietal is also known to match well with beautifully luscious figs. The refreshing acidity in the wine will really create an adventure in your mouth between the figs, curd and vinocotto!
As famed WA wine writer, Ray Jordan, told me a few weeks ago – be adventurous with your wine and food matching! For more tips from Ray check out my interview with him.