One of the first things I had in France as a teenager was figs flambéed in orange liqueur. I realized that's what they mean when they talk about "manna from heaven." Since then I've combined figs with all kinds of spirits, but for one of the best, I reach to the East for Shaoxing wine. This Chinese sherry-like wine is great for both sweet and savory cooking, and today we are going to take a trip on the sweet side with my Baked Figs with Shaoxing Sabayon, a warm dessert flavored with honey and candied ginger.
8 ripe, black mission figs, quartered
3 egg yolks
2 tablespoons Shaoxing wine
3 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon minced candied ginger
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Preheat broiler Place figs in oven-proof oval dishes. Over a bain marie, whisk yolks, Shaoxing wine, honey and ginger until thickened, taking care not to curdle eggs. Off the heat, whisk in lemon juice. Nap over figs and broil for about 1 minute, until lightly colored. Garnish with extra ginger and serve warm.
Ey Muscat de Rivesaltes
Taste: Rich and velvety, with flavors of orange rind, lychee, peach and spice leading into a pleasantly bitter finish
Aroma: Aromatic and complex, recalling orange rind, fresh figs and apricot
This delicately sweet dessert wine is exceptional on its own or paired with fresh fruit desserts, pastries and custard. Lovely with the Baked Figs with Shaoxing Sabayon.
—100% Muscat d'Alexandrie
Chef Ming Tsai is a local restaurateur and host of Simply Ming.