June 2018 Fig Focus

Grilled Cabbage Wedge with Herbed Fig Dressing, Bacon and Blue Cheese

A little heat and char from the grill elevates ordinary (yet highly nutritious) green cabbage into a surprisingly tasty salad ingredient. It’s even better drenched with California Fig and herb dressing, a sprinkle of crisp bacon and crumbled blue cheese.

Tips:

  • Keep your eye on the cabbage wedges during grilling – the times are estimates as grills vary in heat intensity.  
  • Serve with a steak knife to cut the leaves off the core of the cabbage.
  • If you can’t find golden or white balsamic vinegar, use white wine or rice wine vinegar and add a teaspoon or two of sugar.  
  • Feta or Gorgonzola cheese can be used instead of blue.
  • Tossed salad option:  Cool grilled cabbage wedges. Cut leaves from the core (discard core) and thinly slice. Combine in a salad bowl with a couple of cups of your favorite spring salad mix, a few sliced radishes, the Fig Dressing, crumbled bacon and blue cheese. Toss and serve.

Whisk together fig-herb dressing ingredients.

Cut cabbage into wedges.

Grill cabbage wedges.

Scatter with figs, add dressing, bacon and blue cheese.

Grilled Cabbage Wedge with Herbed Fig Dressing, Bacon and Blue Cheese

Serves 6 to 8  

Fig-Herb Dressing:

  • 6 tablespoons golden or white balsamic vinegar 
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup Blue Ribbon® Orchard Choice® or Sun-Maid® California Figs, stemmed and thinly sliced 
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced fresh chives or green onion
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh thyme, oregano or combination
  • ¾ cup olive oil

Grilled Cabbage and Toppings:

  • 1 head green or savoy cabbage, about 2 lb. or 7-inch diameter 
  • ½ teaspoon salt 
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil 
  • ½ cup cooked, chopped bacon (about 4 slices) 
  • ½ cup crumbled blue cheese

1. For dressing, whisk together vinegar, water, salt and pepper to dissolve salt.  Stir in Figs, chives, and thyme. Stir in olive oil. Set aside for 1 hour while preparing other ingredients. 

2. Prepare a grill for medium heat.

3. Remove and discard tough outer leaves from cabbage. Cut cabbage in half. Cut each half into 3 to 4 wedges (each about 2 ¾-inches thick), leaving the core attached to the leaves to hold each wedge together. Brush wedges on cut sides lightly with oil and sprinkle with salt.  

4. Place wedges cut sides down, on grill over medium, direct heat. Cover grill and cook for 4 to 7 minutes or until edges are lightly charred and cabbage begins to soften.  With grilling tongs or spatula, turn wedges over. Recover grill and cook for another 3 to 7 minutes, until edges char slightly and cabbage is crisp-tender.  

5. Place cooked wedges on serving plates or a platter. Remove Figs with slotted spoon and scatter around cabbage wedges. Drizzle dressing on wedges and sprinkle with bacon and blue cheese.  

Nutrition Information per serving: Calories 360; Fat 29g; Cholesterol 10mg; Protein 6g; Carbohydrates 21g; Fiber 5g; Iron 2mg; Sodium 690mg; Calcium 124mg; Potassium 389mg.

Spring into Summer with Blue Ribbon Orchard Choice and Sun-Maid California Figs

Summer’s almost here! With it come the cook-outs and dinners outside. As you’re getting ready to pull out your grill, find inspiration on our Valley Fig Growers blog in June. Can’t wait? Head over to our grilling board on pinterest.  While you’re at it, if you’re not yet following us there, hit the follow button while you’re there for oodles of California Fig ideas.

Let the Sun Shine In—Summer Travel Nutrition Tips 

Stay hydrated and eat healthy
Dehydration happens when your body does not have as much water and fluids as it should. It can be mild, moderate, or severe. So, avoid getting dehydrated. For instance, when you spend a late afternoon at the beach (remember sun safety!) bring water and drink even before you feel thirsty.

Along with staying hydrated, try to make healthy food choices. If you’re at a buffet, you can follow the Dietary Guidelines, for instance, by first filling your plate with fruits, vegetables and whole grains and then adding the protein source.

Keep healthy snacks handy to grab on the go. Blue Ribbon Orchard Choice California Dried Figs make great travel buddies. No refrigeration needed, always “ripe” and ready to eat right out of the package. Dried Figs are packed with fiber and an array of vitamins and minerals to keep you energized for all those fun summer activities.

Plan ahead when traveling by air
Take a few minutes at home to pack some healthy snacks in your carry-on. Toss together a healthy trail or snack mix made with nuts, high fiber California dried figs, and whole grain cereal or make some energy or granola bars.

Ran out of time to pack your snacks? Keep an eye out at the airport for healthy options such as: fruit, packages of granola bars, pretzels, or nuts, and low-fat yogurt. Do you have enough time for a meal? Look for restaurants that offer grilled chicken, salads (go easy on the dressing), bean burritos, sandwiches on whole wheat bread with chicken or turkey, and oatmeal.

Eating gluten free on vacation
What is gluten? A surprising number of people who follow a gluten-free diet actually don’t know what gluten is. Gluten is a mixture of proteins that occur naturally in wheat, rye, and barley. Following a gluten free diet is trendy today. Make sure you really need to avoid gluten by checking with your doctor; it’s a simple blood test. Many people assume that gluten-free is healthier—and it simply isn’t.

As many as 3 million people in the United States do have celiac disease and must avoid gluten. Celiac disease occurs when the body’s natural defense system reacts to gluten by attacking the lining of the small intestine. Without a healthy intestinal lining, the body cannot absorb the nutrients it needs. Non-celiac gluten sensitivity (also known as gluten sensitivity) symptoms often overlap with those of celiac disease, but something different is going on in the body. The intestines are not damaged, and it is not known if there are long-term health consequences to eating gluten. Some people with gluten sensitivity choose to completely avoid gluten, while others eat some gluten. If you want or need to avoid gluten on vacation:

  • Look for foods that are naturally gluten free: fruits (like delicious California Dried Figs), vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts and seeds contain no gluten.
  • Read labels and look for “gluten-free”.
  • When eating out, look for “gluten-free” on the menu. Ask the following questions:
    • What does the restaurant mean by the term “gluten-free?”
    • What ingredients are used in this item?
    • How is the item prepared?

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and tag us @valleyfig —we’d love to see what you’re cooking on Instagram and Facebook!

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