Pasta With Figs Recipe For National Fig Week - The Nibble Webzine Of Food Adventures Pasta With Figs Recipe For National Fig Week
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Pasta With Figs Recipe For National Fig Week

[1] Spaghetti with fig soffrito. The recipe is below (photo © California Figs).

[2] Dried Black Mission figs (photos #2 and #4 © Good Eggs).

[3] Dried Golden figs.

[4] Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Parmesan is the generic form, of more modest quality (photo © Murray’s Cheese).

[5] Garnish with a pinch of crushed red chile flakes (photo © Silk Road Spices).


National Fig Week is a good time to unveil an unusual-yet-delicious pasta dish: Pasta With Fig Sofrito & Parmesan, made with dried California figs. What’s sofrito, you may ask? It’s a staple in Mediterranean, Latin American, Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese cooking.

It’s different, but analogous to, the French mirepoix, which is blend of onion, carrots, and celery.

Sofrito, also called sofregit (Catalan), soffritto (Italian) and refogado (Brazilian Portuguese) is a basic preparation of aromatic ingredients cut into small pieces and sautéed or braised in cooking oil.

These typically include garlic, onion, bell pepper and tomato (some countries, such as Puerto Rico, don’t use tomatoes).

This recipe, from California Figs, is poetically named: garlic, onion, figs and basil or parsley make up the “sofrito.” And the ingredients are sautéed in butter, not olive oil.

But the results of both recipes are the same: deliciousness!

You can use whatever type of pasta you like. We prefer flat fettuccine to round spaghetti. You can also use shapes (farfalle/bowties, penne, etc.).

There are two types of dried California figs: Golden and Mission. The former is amber color, the latter is purple-black. You can use either; but for more eye appeal, how about a mixture of both?

The anchovy fillets add a delightful counterpoint to the figs.

Prep time is 10 minutes, cook time is 20 minutes.
Ingredients For 4-6 Servings

  • 3 quarts water
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 pound dried spaghetti or other pasta
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 ounces California dried figs, chopped or minced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 large white onion, minced
  • Optional: 2 anchovy fillets, mashed or minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil or Italian parsley
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Garnish: red chili flakes and extra grated Parmesan

    1. COMBINE the water and salt in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until just tender/al dente, about 10 minutes.

    2. MELT 2 tablespoons of the butter in a skillet. Add the figs, garlic, onion, optional anchovy fillets, fennel seed, and black pepper. Sauté until the onions are lightly cooked, about 3 minutes.

    3. ADD the basil or Italian parsley, briefly stir, and then remove the skillet from the heat. When the pasta is almost cooked…

    4. REMOVE ½ cup of the water from the pot and add it to the skillet with the fig sofrito. Return the skillet to the heat and bring the water to a simmer. Add the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter and stir until melted.

    5. DRAIN the pasta. Do not over drain the pasta; some water should still cling to the noodles. Immediately transfer the pasta to a bowl.

    6. ADD the warm fig sofrito and the grated Parmesan cheese to the bowl. Toss the pasta to coat. Serve immediately. Garnish with red chile flakes and additional grated Parmesan cheese.


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