Baked Figs with Balsamic Vinegar and Mascarpone Cheese

Baked figs drizzled with balsamic vinegar and topped with mascarpone cheese and almonds make a warm, decadent appetizer or dessert.

| January/February 2012

Baked Figs with Balsamic Vinegar and Mascarpone Cheese

These baked figs are delicious when baked with balsamic vinegar and topped with delicious mascarpone cheese.

6 fresh, whole Turkish or Mission figs
1/4 cup raw almonds
1/4 cup aged balsamic vinegar (the older the vinegar, the sweeter it will be)
3/4 cup mascarpone cheese (see Note, below)
Handful mint leaves, chopped

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice each fig in half lengthwise and scoop out a tiny bit of the interior to make room for the cheese. (Go ahead and eat that part!)

2. Place figs cut-side-up in a small baking dish, and sprinkle almonds around them. Drizzle vinegar over figs and nuts, saving a little vinegar for garnish. Bake for 10 minutes.

3. Place a healthy dollop (roughly a tablespoon) of mascarpone cheese in each fig. Sprinkle with mint, drizzle with remaining vinegar and serve immediately. Serves 6 as an appetizer or dessert 

Note: Mascarpone cheese is very easy to make at home. Check out this recipe to make it yourself! 

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