Serves this fig and cheese bread as a starter for a large group and watch guests enjoy the melting cheese, sweet rubied figs and prosciutto. Or you can also make a vegetarian one with sweet fruit and nut bread and luscious fig and vanilla jam!
I was inspired to make this bread by a recent visit to Orange. We were served a version of this at a Pochi Ma Buoni (few but good) Italian pop up dinner. Although we had been eating a lot we all fell upon this bread like we were starved.
The bread was beautifully fresh and between each crevice was a spread of buttery cheese and fig. I couldn't get it out of my head and I immediately put all of the ingredients on the shopping list because I knew that if I wanted to make it I had to be quick because fig season is almost over.
Do you ever get so eager to eat something that you can't wait to go to sleep and wake up so you can eat again? That's actually me most days. My life is a series of meal highlights and that night, knowing that I had juicy figs and the ingredients in my fridge I turned out the light and wished that it was morning so that I could make it. Is that just me?
The next day I sprung out of bed and made two versions: one with prosciutto and a vegetarian one. The latter replaced the prosciutto with a luscious fig and vanilla jam by Princess Pantry. Dreams? They are made of this!
So tell me Dear Reader, do you go to bed wishing that the next meal and day would hurry up? Do you dream about food?
Ancient Roman Italian Fig Bread
An Original Recipe by Lorraine Elliott
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 15-20 minutes
- 2 loaves bread
- 1/2 cup garlic butter
- 250g/8.8ozs Danish feta cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup mascarpone
- 12 slices prosciutto (or make vegetarian by subbing with 1/2 cup fig jam and omit garlic butter)
- 4 ripe figs
Step 1 - Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Slice into the bread being careful not to cut all the way to the bottom. Spread the bread with garlic butter and prosciutto (or jam) on every second slit. Process the feta, mozzarella and mascarpone together and then stuff into the crevices.
Version with fig jam
Step 2 - Wrap in foil or parchment and bake for 15 minutes until the cheese has melted. Slice fresh figs up and wedge inside the slits.