Pan-fried figs, serrano ham, cream cheese and walnuts on toast

Pan-fried figs, serrano ham, cream cheese and walnuts on toast
  • Serves icon Serves 4 as a tapa
  • Time icon Ready in 15 minutes

Spanish chef Omar Allibhoy puts sweet figs, creamy cheese, salty ham and crunchy walnuts on toast for an easy and quick tapas idea.

Ingredients

  • 100g cream cheese
  • 50g walnuts
  • 4 slices bread, such as sourdough or rustic, toasted
  • 4 figs (see food team’s tips)
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • a splash of sherry vinegar
  • a pinch of rock salt
  • 4 thin slices of serrano ham

Method

  1. Mix the cream cheese with three-quarters of the walnuts, crumbling them between your hands and beating them into the cheese with a fork. Spread generously over the toasted bread.
  2. Open the figs by cutting a cross at the pointed end and opening them up like a flower with your fingers. Drizzle some olive oil into a pan over a medium heat and add the brown sugar. Add the figs and fry the bases only, without turning them; you only want to cook the bottom of the figs. Watch that the caramel that forms in the pan doesn’t burn (see know-how). After 4-5 minutes in the pan, add the sherry vinegar and turn off the heat.
  3. Place the hot figs over the toasts and drizzle with the hot juices from the pan. Top with a good drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, a pinch of salt and the slices of ham. Sprinkle with the remaining walnuts and serve immediately.

Recipe from Spanish Made Simple: Foolproof Spanish Recipes for Every Day by Omar Allibhoy of Tapas Revolution (Quadrille £20)

Photography: Martin Poole

delicious. tips

  1. Figs are at their peak in early autumn; make sure you buy soft and sweet ones.

  2. You may need to add a little water if the caramel becomes too thick – just add a splash to the pan to thin it.

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