During city summers, when it’s about to storm, the sky goes yellow and the wind picks up. It’s humid and breezy at the same time, and you can taste the moisture in the air, if it’s not already coming down from the sky.
Even though it’s September, summer is hanging on a little longer. Random raindrops fell on my head as I walked back from the store last night; too few to justify an umbrella, but enough to encourage me to walk faster. I’ve been caught in a summer storm too many times while living here. My umbrella becomes a semi-permanent fixture in the summer, because when you have it, it’s a near-guarantee of no rain and a regrettably heavy bag to carry. If it’s already raining, well, there’s not much you can do other than run.
I’ve been in and out of town so much this summer that I haven’t cooked nearly as much as I’d like, and I often open the fridge to find nothing to cook, or worse, something gone bad. I’ve been seeing figs at the store for the last few weeks, but couldn’t justify buying them. There’s a vague memory lurking in my mind of roasting figs in the oven several years ago with goat cheese and drizzled honey. Every time I see them in the store, I fuzzily recall it, and my fingers itch to pick up a basket. I gave in this week and tonight, rather than roasting them, I made pizza. The lavash from Trader Joe’s (probably unauthentic, I realize) makes a perfect base for a very thin crust pizza, making this light and crisp. If there’s figs near you, pick them up to try it out yourself, or at the very least, roast them up with some goat cheese and honey for a snack or dessert.
Fig & Goat Cheese Pizza
makes 1 thin-crust pizza
1 oz goat cheese
2 handfuls arugula
3 figs, cut into eighths
¼ onion, sliced thinly and caramelized
chopped fresh sage (optional)
pizza base (TJ’s lavash bread)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and place a baking tray inside. Slice the onion thinly, and toss it into a skillet over medium-low heat with a touch of olive oil. Stir every few minutes as you chop your other ingredients. Cut the figs into quarters, then halve those. Roughly chop the arugula, and chop up the sage as well (if using). Lay out your base and assemble the pizza, distributing the figs, arugula, and sage as evenly as possible. My onions were done around this time, about ten minutes of sautéing. Make sure they’re soft and starting to brown. Distribute the onions as well, and then use a fork to crumble your goat cheese around the pizza (if it’s not already crumbled). Grate a little fresh pepper over everything. Take out the heated tray from the oven, slide the pizza onto the tray, and bake for around 8-10 minutes, until the edges are brown and crisp.
A few notes: if you like your pizza more sweet than savory, add another fig. If you like it a bit more cheesy, up the goat cheese. If you prefer your pizza a little less crisp, no need to put the baking tray in early – I just love that crunch.