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It’s no secret that some of the best produce comes out of that short but sweet time when summer transitions to fall; Alex Jackson’s black fig and tomato salad is like an ode to two of our favorites. If you use the freshest ingredients you can get your hands on, it’s bound to be a masterpiece. (Luckily, it’s beyond easy to make.)
“This recipe is one to be made as summer gives way to autumn,” the author of Provençal: Simple Seasonal Southern French Cooking writes, “and only when both figs and tomatoes are spectacularly good.” This calls for a trip to the farmers market, doesn’t it? “The rest is pretty easy—a few leaves of basil, some good vinegar and the best olive oil you can get,” he continues.
And don’t forget to pair this salad with cheese. Jackson recommends mozz, but you can switch things up if you want: “Good, fresh cheese is an obvious accompaniment to tomatoes and figs. Mozzarella, obviously, and good buffalo or sheeps’ milk ricotta, but also young goats’ milk cheese, shaved with a knife over the salad. I wouldn’t say no to a piece of toast either, rubbed lightly with garlic and drenched in good olive oil.”
Ooh, we like the sound of that.
Excerpted from Provençal: Simple Seasonal Southern French Cooking by Alex Jackson, published by Pavilion Books, 2019.
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