Archive for November, 2009

Fill up on Figs

Sunday, November 1st, 2009

Figs are a functional food with health benefits beyond the nutrients they contain. A 1/4-cup serving of dried figs contains just 93 calories and is a source of potassium, calcium and iron. One of the main health benefits of figs is their high fiber content. Figs contain both insoluble and soluble fiber. In fact, at 3.7 grams of fiber per 1/4-cup of dried figs, they are higher in fiber than any other fresh or dried fruit per serving. While adults should consume 25 grams for women to 38 grams for men of fiber per day, many Americans consume less than half that amount. Along with fiber, figs contain antioxidants called phenols, which may offer a protective effect against heart disease and cancer. Fresh figs are in season now, but dried figs provide all the same great benefits year-round. They’re portable and versatile, a smart addition to any meal or snack. They are a sweet compliment to melon and prosciutto and a nice compliment to almost any salad. Here is a recipe for you enjoy!

Prosciutto, Fig, and Mozzarella Salad

Prep: 15 minutes

Total: 15 minutes

Ingredients

Serves 4

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons olive oil

Coarse salt and ground pepper

1 1/4 pounds arugula (2 to 3 bunches), stemmed and washed well

2 pints bocconcini (bite-size fresh mozzarella balls), drained, or 1 pound fresh mozzarella, cut into bite-size pieces

8 slices prosciutto (about 4 ounces total)

1 package (8 ounces) dried figs, quartered (stems removed if thick)

Directions

In a small bowl, whisk vinegar and oil; season with salt and pepper. Reserve at least 1 tablespoon dressing (for drizzling); set aside. Place arugula in a large bowl; toss with remaining dressing.

Divide arugula among four serving plates. Dividing evenly, top with bocconcini, prosciutto, and figs; drizzle all with reserved dressing.