After quite a little hiatus there consisting of family weddings, wedding showers, and mini vacations, I am ready to get back at it my friends. I apologize for being gone for so long, but sometimes everybody needs a little R&R. But don’t worry, this fall, I am back on the grind!
Not only am I about to blow your mind with this amazing fig flatbread recipe, but my following posts will update you on my latest and greatest media work and also…FALL. Fall is my favorite season. Yes, yes, yes I know, classic Mid-western love of pumpkin spice-everything, hoodie sweatshirts, crackling dried leaves of all colors, scary movies, leggings, baking (actually the only time of the year I enjoy it), Halloween, and lots and lots of football. Having lived away from Michigan in Texas before, I am always more and more appreciative of the four beautiful seasons we are blessed with in Michigan (some longer than others-clear of throat-“winter”). But before I really start ranting about my endearing love for fall, I’m going to update you on one of my favorite recipes from this past summer…Pancetta and fig flatbread.
This flatbread consists of local Grand Rapids’ pizza dough, figs, arugula, pancetta, caramelized onions, and feta cheese. So easy, yet so delicious. Let’s talk about figs for a second. This was my virgin cooking experience with figs. I have always wanted to cook or bake with figs, but have just never gotten around to it…until now. Being that I am a native Michigander and the majority of figs are produced in Texas and California, it makes sense that Mid-westerners often don’t use figs in cooking. Figs are initially native to western Asian and the Mediterranean. The beginning use of figs dates back to 5,000 B.C., which is pretty incredible if you ask me. Some of the most popular ways of fig consumption include fresh, dried, or preserved in jams or pastes. Most figs are usually in season between June and September with some even into the fall. Figs have a sweet taste, yet crunchy texture on the inside with a smooth skin on the outside.
Did I mention that prior to cooking this flatbread, my only experience with figs was fig newtons? Yep, those yummy little sandwich pastries you ate as a kid, stuffed with processed fig paste and added sugar. Delicious, yet maybe not the most nutritious. Try them raw or cooked folks. A serving of figs (4-5 figs or 1/4 cup) is low in calories and a great source of dietary fiber, potassium, and calcium. They make an easy snack, healthy dessert, or unique topping to pizzas. Be sure to try this fig flatbread before they go out of season this fall!
Fig, Caramelized Onion, and Pancetta Flatbread
Yield: 1 (~10″) pizza
Prep time: 20-25 mins, Cook time: 10-12 minutes, Total time: 35-40 mins
8-12″ Pizza crust or dough (we use Martha’s Vineyard fresh pizza doughs)
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 tsp. garlic powder
5 fresh figs, sliced
1/2 cup yellow onions, sliced
1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
4-6 oz. pancetta, cubed
1 cup fresh arugula
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Slice the onions and pour 1 Tbsp of olive oil into a stainless steel skillet. Add onions to the skillet on medium, high heat. Let the onions caramelize for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally every 3-5 minutes. While the onions are cooking, slice your figs and chop the pancetta.
Next, roll out the pizza dough (if needed). Brush 2 Tbsp. olive oil on the pizza dough and sprinkle garlic powder on top. Spread the arugula across the surface of the pizza. Next, add the sliced figs, pancetta, and crumbled feta. Once onions are fully caramelized, spread on top of the pizza.
Bake pizza directly on aluminum foil or baking sheet in the oven at 375 degrees for about 10-12 minutes (depending your desired browning of the pizza crust).
Slice and get figgy with it!