Nigel Slater’s recipes for goat’s cheese and figs, and black-eyed bean burgers | Meals

This time final 12 months, the little stone terrace outdoors the kitchen was plagued by ripe figs, the fruits squashed – the results of their lengthy fall from the tree. Too brittle to climb – except you occur to be a squirrel – the tree produced extra fruit than I’ve ever recognized, a balm for the frustration of being unable to journey south. A 12 months on and the terrace is spotless, the figs nonetheless inexperienced and clinging tight to their branches. There will probably be no scarlet glut this 12 months.

Few of my very own figs will ripen now, however no autumn goes to cross with no plate of the fruit – mushy, decadent and luscious – on my desk. Purple, inexperienced and someplace in between, Turkish, Italian or domestically grown, they’ll discover their manner on to plain white plates with folds of San Daniele, Bavarian speck or Iberico the color of dried blood; they are going to be tucked into salads with walnuts and crimson chicory or just wolfed as they’re. I generally make just a few stretch a bit additional by slicing and overlapping them on sizzling focaccia then melting a small, ripe cheese and a trickle of honey over them.

A extra substantial plate this week happened once I made a batch of beanburgers, patting the paste of black-eyed beans, basil and chilli into little desserts with flour-dusted arms and frying them till their outsides crisped. We ate them for lunch with a tomato salad and among the complete beans and basil we had put aside earlier.

Focaccia with goat’s cheese and figs

A sandwich of goat’s cheese and figs is a totally good factor, however you’ll take it to an altogether completely different degree when you toast it. The honey – scented with thyme and spiked with grain mustard – soaks via the recent, crisp toast. The cheese melts over the ripe figs and the entire thing turns into a stunning combination of textures, candy and savoury. Sufficient for two

rosemary 2 or 3 sprigs
honey 4 tbsp
grain mustard 1 tbsp
focaccia 100g
small figs 6-8
goat’s cheese 130g

First, warmth an overhead (oven) grill. Then take away the rosemary needles from their stems – you want 2 tsp of them. Chop them very finely. Put the rosemary in a small saucepan with the honey and grain mustard and place over a average warmth, warming the honey gently, till it’s liquid, then put aside.

Slice the focaccia in half horizontally to provide 2 flat items, then place them on a grill pan or baking sheet, lower facet up. Toast beneath the recent grill till flippantly colored and simply beginning to flip gold.

Brush the toasted facet of the focaccia with two-thirds of the honey and mustard dressing. Slice every fig into 4 from stem to base then lay them on high of the focaccia. Thickly slice the goat’s cheese – you want about 3 slices per toast – then lay the slices on high of the figs.

Trickle the reserved honey and mustard dressing over the cheese, add just a few spare thyme sprigs if you want, and return to the grill till the cheese begins to bubble. Eat instantly.

Black-eyed bean and herb burgers

‘Seasoned with excessive generosity’: black-eyed bean and herb burgers. {Photograph}: Jonathan lovekin/The Observer

There’s a considerably worthy undertone to the phrase “beanburger”. To extinguish this, I discover myself seasoning my little bean desserts with excessive generosity. These I made this week had been flecked with recent herbs – basil and chives – and with the lingering warmth from a spoonful of sriracha. Crisp outdoors and mushy inside, they work in a mushy bun or a wrap, but in addition as a stand-alone dish, with a tomato salad.

Serves 3 (makes 6)

black-eyed beans 1 x 400g can
butter beans 1 x 400g can
chives 12
parsley 15g (weight with stalks)
basil leaves 25g
garlic 2 cloves
sriracha 1 tbsp
olive oil 2 tbsp, plus a bit additional
cherry or different small tomatoes 8

Tip the beans right into a colander or sieve and rinse them beneath working water. Shake the beans dry then tip them right into a mixing bowl.

Finely chop the chives. Take away the parsley leaves from the stalks and finely chop them, then finely shred the basil leaves. (I discover the simplest manner to do that is to position the leaves on high of each other, roll them tightly then shred them finely with a knife.) Add the herbs to the beans.

Peel and finely crush the garlic cloves to a paste. (I like to make use of a pestle with a pinch of salt.) Scrape into the beans, then season the combination with salt and black pepper. Reserve 1 / 4 of the combination in a small bowl, then mash the remainder with a potato masher or briefly in a meals processor. Take care to not overmix. Stir within the sriracha.

Form the combination into 6 small patties, about 8cm in diameter, then set them on a tray within the fridge to relaxation for half an hour.

Thickly slice the tomatoes, toss with a bit olive oil and black pepper and put aside.

Heat 3 tbsp of olive oil in a shallow pan over a average warmth, place the patties (or as many as will match into your pan) within the sizzling oil and cook dinner for five or 6 minutes till golden beneath. Flip the patties over rigorously with a palette knife, then cook dinner the opposite facet for an extra 3 or 4 minutes.

Divide the tomatoes between 4 plates, then scatter the reserved beans over them and divide the desserts amongst them.

Comply with Nigel on Twitter @NigelSlater

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