Fresh Fig and Gorgonzola Pasta: a Summer Favorite

Thanks to the California Fig Growers Association, who gave us this recipe several years ago, Fresh Fig and Gorgonzola Pasta has become a summer favorite. We are fortunate to have an old fig tree in our yard, so we have plenty of fresh figs every summer for a week or two. When we do, we enjoy eating a few right off the tree or with cereal in the morning. But our favorite is to cook them with pasta. The recipe is easy, though it does help to have plenty of fresh figs on hand! I know I’ve increased the amount of figs over the years.

1/2 of a large onion, sliced in rounds or half-rounds

2 Tbsp butter

1 Tbsp olive oil

2-3 cups fresh figs, sliced in half

1 cup pecans (or walnuts) coarsely chopped — more if you have them

4 oz. Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

1 lb long pasta (linguini, thin spaghetti, fettuccine, etc.)

Salt and pepper to taste.

Boil water for the pasta.

Sauté the sliced rounds or half-rounds of onion in butter and olive oil until caramelized (lightly browned).

Add figs when onion is lightly browned, continue sautéing and add pecans when figs are cooked and pasta is nearly done.

Add a little of the Gorgonzola in the end to make a rich sauce, then serve over pasta, sprinkling the rest of the Gorgonzola on top.

Makes 3-4 main dish servings or more side dishes. We usually eat this on its own. The figs and caramelized onions make this a sweet dish. The Gorgonzola and butter make it rich and creamy. The flavors combine to make an unexpectedly delicious treat. Even if you’re not a Gorgonzola fan, I think you’ll like this dish. The cheese isn’t as sharp when paired with the sweet figs.

Published by Kendall Dunkelberg

I am a poet, translator, and professor of literature and creative writing at Mississippi University for Women, where I direct the Low-Res MFA in Creative Writing, the undergraduate concentration in creative writing, and the Eudora Welty Writers' Symposium. I have published three books of poetry, Barrier Island Suite, Time Capsules, and Landscapes and Architectures, as well as a collection of translations of the Belgian poet Paul Snoek, Hercules, Richelieu, and Nostradamus. I live in Columbus with my wife, Kim Whitehead; son, Aidan; and dog, Aleida.

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