Easy recipe: Chocolate-Dipped Stuffed Figs
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup brandy (or 1/2 cup water mixed with 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract)
15 to 30 small pieces candied ginger, toasted nuts or chocolate
5 to 6 ounces semisweet, bittersweet or premium white chocolate, chopped
With sharp knife, cut small slit in bottom of each fig. In small saucepan, heat sugar and water over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Stir in brandy and figs. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. Drain figs, cool and dry thoroughly.
Stuff one or two pieces of ginger, nuts and/or chocolate into each fig. Place chopped chocolate in 1-cup glass measuring cup or small microwave-safe bowl. Heat on medium until almost melted, stirring often. Remove, and stir until melted.
Hold stem of each fig, and dip in melted chocolate. Place figs, stems up, on wax paper-lined tray until chocolate sets. Decorate with white chocolate or nuts, as desired. Store in airtight container in refrigerator. Makes 15 figs.
-- Family Features/ www.ValleyFig.com
Did You Know?
February is Avocado and Banana Month, Grapefruit Month, Strawberry Month, Sweet Potato Month and Bake for Family Fun Month.
What year was the Twinkie invented?
Answer is at bottom of column
Wise to the Word: Mai tai
[MI-ti] A potent, complex mixed drink made with light and dark rums, orgeat syrup, curacao, orange and lime juices and any other touches the bartender might add. It's served over ice and garnished with a skewer of fresh fruit. It is said to have been created by Victor Bergeron, the original owner of Trader Vic's restaurant, who said he created it for a couple of Tahitian friends. On tasting it, they reportedly exclaimed, "Mai Tai!" meaning "out of this world."
Number to Know
410: A 6-inch Italian B.M.T. sub on wheat bread from Subway is 410 calories.
The Dish On …
"Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London's Ottolenghi" by Yotam Ottolenghi
Yotam Ottolenghi is one of the most exciting new talents in the cooking world, with four fabulous, eponymous London restaurants and a weekly newspaper column that's read by foodies all over the world. Yotam Ottolenghi is one of the most exciting new talents in the cooking world, with four fabulous, eponymous London restaurants and a weekly newspaper column that's read by foodies all over the world.
-- Chronicle Books LLC
From the Beer Nut’s Blog
This year, Dark Horse Brewing Company from Michigan will be bringing back its Thirsty Trout Porter and will debut its Kamita Kolsch, which it is calling a “Polish-style Kolsch.” At the Extreme Beer Fest in Boston in February, it will debut Monster 29, a barleywine brewed in memory of the sailors who died in the Edmund Fitzgerald wreck.
Meanwhile, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery from Delaware has made a change to its lineup, making Burton Baton, which was previously an occasional release, into a year-round beer. It will also release a beer only known as “Brand X” some time this year. The style and when it will be released is not known.
To read more from the Beer Nut, visit http://blogs.wickedlocal.com/beernut/.
Food Quiz Answer