Thomas Keller is one of the most iconic chefs of this era. His finesse, detail, perfectionism and professionalism, has made him one of the chefs to admire. With his empire of restaurants ranging from French Laundry to Bouchon to Per Se, he is known around the world as the premier chef. French Laundry is on my bucket list along with Per Se. We enjoyed Bouchon several months ago along with the Bouchon bakery and absolutely loved everything about the experience. I received his new cookbook, Ad Hoc for a gift and completely enjoy looking at it over and over again. It inspired me for this Crostini.
I had picked up two pounds of figs on Friday at Costco. With one pound I made the delicious Fig Coffee Cake that was a complete winner with my husband and next door neighbors. The second pound I made Fig and Balsamic Jam from the Ad Hoc cookbook. This could quite possibly be the most supreme jam on earth and so simple to make. Once the balsamic reduces along with the figs and sugar, the sweetness of the vinegar comes through. A quick tip - if you ever want to replicate aged balsamic, simply reduce over low to medium heat and let cool. It speeds up the aging process.
From my last post, it was a Crostini extravaganza on Saturday night. I made the Fig and Balsamic Jam and topped a goat cheese Crostini with this decadent jam. The tang of the goat cheese along with the sweet fig and balsamic jam was magical. It was a true celebration for your palate. Before fig season ends, I am going to make more jam and can it for year long enjoyment.
Fig and Balsamic Jam
1 Lb. Figs, Black Mission, stems removed and coarsely chopped
¾ C. Sugar
¼ C. Balsamic Vinegar
Fresh Lemon Juice
Combine the figs, sugar, and balsamic vinegar in a large saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium to high heat. Then lower the heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook. Break up the large pieces and stir periodically until the jam thickens. Remove from the heat and squeeze about a tablespoon of lemon juice and stir. Taste and add more lemon juice if desired. If too chunky, you can use a food processor to quickly pulse a bit smoother. Spoon the jam into a container with a lid and let cool. Refrigerate for up to one month.
Slightly adapted from Ad Hoc by Thomas Keller
Simply toast up the crostini, spread a bit of your favorite goat cheese and top with some of the Fig and Balsamic Jam. Enjoy!