In the last few years I have come to love this time of the year. Not just because the temperatures are finally dipping below the century point (barely) in Phoenix, but because fresh figs are finding their way into the markets. Fig season is fairly short, so when I can get my hands on some, I tend to hoard them.
We enjoy them in the raw, just washed; stuffed with a little blue cheese and drizzled with balsamic, in salads, on bruschetta, etc. But, I think my favorite thus far, is this pizza recipe we came up with last year during fig season. It really is a conglomeration of ideas I've seen in various cooking magazines. This photos was taken last year, but I made this again last week, and it's just as good.
Fig & Gorgonzola Pizza with Carmelized Onions & Shitakes
1lb. fresh pizza dough
2 tsp. dried rosemary
approx. 1 lb. fresh figs, rinsed and halved
1/2 large white or yellow onion
butter for sauteeing
1 tsp sugar
6-8 fresh shitake mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup (or more) gorgonzola cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat saute pan over medium heat. Add butter, and start sauteeing the onions. Once they are soft and nearly translucent, add approx. 1 tsp. sugar, and a little more butter. Cover and let them "carmelize" over low heat for approx. 15 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook an additional 5 -7 minutes.
While onions are cooking, begin the pizza dough. Add the dried rosemary to the dough and knead it to mix the herbs evenly, being careful not to overwork the dough. Roll out pizza dough onto a baking pan or baking stone. Once at the desired thickness, top with mozzarella, figs, and onion-mushroom mixture. Sprinkle with gorgonzola. Bake 10-15 minutes.
We had this with a bottle of Hayman & Hill Pinot Noir, which was a gem we originally tasted at a great spot called Elements. The sweetness of the figs, along with the "earthy" mushrooms make pinot noir an excellent pairing.