by David Latt
The best appetizers are full of flavor, fun to look at and, ideally, effortless to prepare. Vegetable crudités fit those requirements but they aren't exciting.
A delicious appetizer -- albeit one for those without caloric restrictions -- is a piece of prosciutto with a slice of triple cream and a topping of fig puree. The key to this dish is using high quality ingredients: Saint André triple cream, a good Italian prosciutto and ripened farmers' market fresh figs.
The prosciutto can be rolled up, but leaving it open is visually pleasing. Anyone picking a piece up will naturally do the rolling themselves.
This dish is delicious any time of day: for breakfast, as a light lunch with a salad, or in the evening with cocktails and wine.
Prosciutto with Fig Puree and Triple Cream Cheese Recipe
Makes 4-6 servings.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
10 very ripe figs, washed
1/2 pound Italian prosciutto
1/3 pound triple cream cheese
The figs have to be very ripe. Scrape out the inside and discard the skins. Remove any excess fat from the prosciutto. Cut into pieces approximately 2 inches by 3 inches. Cut the triple cream into small slices.
Place a slice of cheese on each piece of prosciutto, topped with a small spoonful of fig puree. Arrange on a plate. Serve cold or room temperature.
Lightly caramelize chopped almonds, walnuts or hazelnuts, and sprinkle a few bits on top of the fig puree.
Place the prosciutto with its toppings on a thin cracker or a piece of crisp garlic toast.
Instead of triple cream, use a cheese of your choice, ideally a soft cheese.
Roll the prosciutto around the cheese and fig puree.
Appetizer Recipe, Italian Cuisine