While vacationing in Italy, we enjoyed the chance to cook at home with fresh local ingredients, including those found among the grounds of the house where we stayed. Some of our favorite offerings were those of the ripe fig tree and bursting hedges of fragrant rosemary — this place was like walking through a foragers dream.
Aside from eating fresh figs straight from the tree, we found ourselves working them into many of the meals we prepared during our stay — this savory and sweet fig and rosemary tart turned out to be one of our collective favorites. The sweet hints of apricot from the jam paired with the smooth creamy ricotta cheese make for such a delicious base paired with the simple freshness of the figs and rosemary.
While a simple dish to assemble, this recipe lends itself for many hands, good conversation and slow sips of wine. Mom and Aunt Vera collected and sliced the figs and rosemary while I curiously tried to figure out the oven conversion between fahrenheit and celsius.
Mom slicing the figs for this tart in Italy
A slow bake in the oven allows the figs to just slightly caramelize and draws such a fragrant aroma from the warming rosemary — everyone will want to know what smells so good if you give this tart a go.
- Puff pastry sheet
- 8-10 Figs, thinly sliced
- 2/3 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
- 1/4 cup apricot jam
- Fresh sprig of rosemary
- 1 Tablespoon honey (optional)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit (190 celsius, that is). Allow the pastry to thaw before rolling out over a parchment lined baking sheet. Prick pastry with a fork all over.
Combine the apricot jam and ricotta cheese until roughly blended, then generously spread this cheese mixture over the pastry, leaving a 1/2 inch border of crust. Arrange the sliced figs to cover the cheese spread, then dust with the freshly chopped rosemary to garnish.
Place onto the center rack in the oven, allowing to bake for 18-25 minutes, mainly watching for the pastry crust to brown and the figs to slightly curl along the edges. Remove tart from oven, allowing to rest for at least 5 minutes before cutting to serve.
Once slightly cooled, drizzle fresh honey over the top of the tart just before serving for an added hint of sweetness. Serve warm for breakfast or as a welcome finish to a meal — or cool as a starter or mid-day snack.