Juicy Figs Stuffed in Tomatoes Make a Summer Appetizer

Tomato Stuffed with Fig, Prosciutto, and Mint (CAWCOM) (2)

Our figs in California are so abundant and delicious that throughout the summer we dream all ways of using them.  This particular preparation is wonderful as an appetizer to a barbeque party.  The tomatoes I call for are a cultivar called Carmelo, but you can use any tomato which, when cut in half, could be popped in your mouth.  A cherry tomato is a wee bit too small, a but a large cherry tomato might work.  In any case I’m sure you’ll see an appropriate tomato when you are shopping in your farmers market.  The whole tomato should be about 1 1/4 inches in diameter.

Also important in this simple preparation are the figs and the prosciutto.  The figs should be ripe and Black Mission figs are fine to use here.  The figs should almost be bursting.  The prosciutto should be quite thin as you do not want to chew it: it should melt into your mouth with the figs.  To assure its thinness ask the deli man to show you his first slice.

Tomato Stuffed with Prosciutto, Figs, and Mint
There is no cooking in this recipe. It is a quick way of preparing an accompaniment to grilled foods, or as an appetizer. When figs are in season and you’re looking forward to barbecuing, this is an easy side dish.
Salt to taste
10 small ripe Carmelo (or similar) tomatoes, halved and hollowed out
1/4 pound prosciutto di Parma, thinly sliced, each slice cut into fourths
10 fresh figs, cut in half
5 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint and several whole leaves for garnish
Lightly salt the inside of each tomato. With your thumb, stuff a piece of prosciutto into the tomato half. Using a teaspoon, scoop out the ripe fig and stuff into the tomato on top of the prosciutto. Sprinkle some mint on top and serve at room temperature. Garnish the platter with whole mint leaves. Do not refrigerate if you are serving this later.
Makes 4 servings

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