Honey, Balsamic Vinegar and Walnut Glazed Figs

Serves: 2
Approx cost: €2
Approx calories (per serving): ~220
Approx preparation and cooking time: 10 mins

So here’s a strange one – I have a vague recollection of seeing a Swedish TV chef make something involving figs and honey in a frying pan on a couple of years ago and thought I’d give it a shot last night, having just bought some fresh figs. Having now eaten it, I have to say that I’m not really sure whether I’d classify it as a starter or a dessert! Served on it’s own with some chopped herbs, maybe some crumbled feta cheese I think it would make a most excellent starter. Equally, the tangy sweetness would serve as an excellent light dessert, maybe with a dollop of natural yoghurt or cream cheese. As a result I’m posting this recipe in both categories because I’m not really sure, but it is pretty good. It’s also visibly quite impressive – the photos I got weren’t the best, nor was the natural light, but if you were out to try and impress someone then making this would probably be a hit!


Honey, Balsamic Vinegar and Walnut Glazed Figs ingredients

– 6 fresh Figs
– 1 tbsp Honey
– 1 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
– 20g Walnuts
– 2 tsps Olive Oil
– Juice from half a Lemon
– Salt
– Pepper


  1. Start off by combining the honey, balsamic vinegar and lemon juice and stirring well until you get a dark syrup-like mixture. Wash and remove the stalks from the figs and then cut each one in half lengthways.

    Fresh figs

  2. Heat the Olive Oil in a large frying pan and meanwhile, crush the walnuts in a Mortar and Pestle (or chop them finely). Add the halved figs into the hot oil and toss in the oil for around a minute.

    Frying lightly in olive oil

  3. Add in the Vinegar/Honey and Lemon Juice mix to the pan and toss the figs in the reducing liquid. Add in the chopped walnuts and mix well. Continue to fry, stirring until the liquid had reduced almost completely.

    Adding in the walnuts

  4. Serve out the figs and pour any remaining syrup over the top. Serve as is, or with some crumbled feta and rocket, or even some cream cheese and enjoy!

    Honey, Balsamic Vinegar and Walnut Glazed Figs



  1. says

    Ah, I was just thinking that I wanted to do something with fresh figs…they're so delicious! What a tasty sounding glaze Charles – love the combo of honey and balsamic. I bet the walnuts add some nice texture too. Your photo, by the way, is a stunner! If I'm organized, I'll bring the ingredients up to the cottage this weekend and give it a go! (most likely as a starter although I agree, could go either way). Thanks –

    • says

      Aaah, I'm still jealous of you even now – I've spent the greater part of my day dreaming about having a little getaway by the water like you. Do you have mains water and electricity up there? I only ask because you can buy little cottages like this quite cheaply up in the north of Sweden, where my wife is from, but they often don't have mains water (and sometimes no sewerage). They have wells but they're not ideal for long term accomodation.

      • says

        We are set up with water and electricity but the cottage is not winterized (which is fine because we are tied down to the city in the winter – what with hockey and all! :) The fixer-upper route has worked well for us both for the purchase of our first home and the cottage – there's time and work involved but you can get great value for your money…

  2. says

    This looks wonderful. Those figs look so fresh. A lot of people have fig trees where I live, sadly I don't. But there's always the farmers market.

    • says

      I remember there was a big house near where my parents lived which had *huge* fig trees in the garden… when they were ripe they used to hang over the garden wall… just a bit too high for me to sneakily reach them as I went past. Oh the things I'd do with trees like that (ok, I'd probably just eat them all as-is, but still!)

  3. says

    Oh, I love fresh figs all carmelized. I'm not sure I can find fresh figs right now, but I will definitely save this one!

    • says

      Thanks Linda. I always find it amazing when you think about it. Something which is so easy for one part of the world to get during x season, is almost completely impossible for the other part to get. I've been seeing quite a few recipes around recently calling for brussels sprouts and they're just about impossible to find anywhere for me right now. The world really is a fascinating place!

  4. says

    What a delicious looking, easy and elegant recipe! I love figs but never thought to prepare them like this. Thanks for sharing! You have a beautiful blog and I'm looking forward to exploring more of your recipes. :)

    • says

      Thanks Georgia! I find some things which I don't eat so often, like figs, are almost too "special" to do too much with… it's often best to just enjoy them as they are. Same with raspberries and blackberries… I don't eat them nearly as much as I'd like, and when I do I feel like I want to enjoy them in their purest form, but sometimes it's nice to push the boat out a bit and try something new! Hope you have a good day :)

  5. says

    I've never had a fresh fig, but this looks like I need to have one. Miss A also is having quite the obsession with balsamic, so this would likely be a hit with her too. The walnuts and honey might entice Mr. N, but he's not a big balsamic fan. Hmmm…another thing I need to keep my eyes open for in the grocery store. (Or at the farmer's market if I ever get myself to one!)

    • says

      If you're ever wanting to eat figs again I'd recommend against reading this Wikipedia article about Fig Wasps – yikes! Can't believe you never tried a fresh one before – if you can get some good, plump juicy ones, they're so good! You could always tell Mr N that the balsamic is a new type of chocolate sauce… maybe he'll give it a try then! 😀

  6. says

    All these fabulous food for about 5 euro!!! I am in heaven! I am so glad I found your site… the cost of food has skyrocketed to ridiculous heights and any ideas and recipes like these are so welcome. This fig recipe looks great! Will try it over the weekend (too lazy to cook much during the week…bad, I know…) I'll be back often!

    • says

      Thanks for stopping by! Hope you enjoy looking around, and let me know if you get round to trying the recipe – it will be really good with some crumbled feta cheese I think! :)

    • says

      Thanks Jenny! If I could change one thing in the recipe I would probably chop the nuts even more finely, and maybe even toast them slightly – something to bear in mind maybe if you try it for yourself?! Hope you enjoy it! :)

  7. says

    Hi Charles, it's my first visit to your blog and I love both the 5 euro idea and the recipes, not to mention the lovely photos. I must admit I have never counted how much I spend on home-made meals, but your dishes don't look "restricted budget" at all! I totally agree what you said in your shrimp curry post- the French are extremely scared of the hot dishes (most of my French family and friends are). The only delicious hot dish in the French cuisine is steak tartare in a good restaurant… (it may be very spicy and hot!).
    I didn't know it was already the fig season (I haven't seen them on my market) and I must admit I have never cooked raw figs (only dry ones). I must try one day.

    • says

      Hi Sissi, thanks so much for your lovely comment – now that I've been doing this blog for 7 or 8 months I wonder if perhaps "Five Euros" was challenging enough… but then "Three Euro Food" doesn't really have the same ring to it 😉

      Regarding France – it's such a shame, because the chilli-fear has leeched into other cuisines as well – almost every Chinese restaurant serves the same, unpalatable menu of sweet and sour this, stir-fried that – there's no innovation. I was SO happy recently to discover a traditional Szechuan restaurant down a little side-street in Paris. They haven't allowed themselves to be "bullied" into submission by the French… most of their customers are Chinese ex-pats and as a result their food is as spicy and delicious as it always should be. I'm still on the look-out for a non-Frenchified Indian restaurant, but no luck so far :) Have a good remainder of the day!

      • says

        Charles, thank you for the answer.
        Whenever I go to Paris I am very happy to go to French restaurants and have some good French dishes…. However, since I am crazy for Japanese cuisine, I was very glad to discover a magic street with Japanese restaurants. I don't know if you like Japanese food (I don't talk only about sushi…), but rue St Anne (close to Opera) is full of Japanese small non-pompous fast-food type restaurants I would love so much to have in Switzerland… There are also some Korean ones (I tried one really excellent).
        Otherwise, I am lucky because my city has some good Indian restaurants. When I want to cry during my dinner, there is a restaurant where they actually LISTEN to me when I say "very very hot please" 😉

        • says

          Yes! Rue St Anne – I know it well… there's two great noodle places there, one for udon and soba called Naniwa-Ya, and another called Tokyo Ramen. I love the okonomiyaki place in the street too! They used to have a yakiniku restaurant with little grills on the table for you to grill your own meat but it closed down :(

          The next time you're in Paris I *really* recommend going to a place called "Bong" – A wonderful Korean BBQ restaurant at <a href="http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Bong,+42+rue+blomet,+75015+paris,+france&hl=en&ll=48.842718,2.305841&spn=0.009801,0.020685&sll=48.842562,2.306013&sspn=0.009801,0.020685&t=h&z=16&iwloc=A&quot; rel="nofollow">42 rue Blomet. Once you've ordered your meat you get about 30 different accompaniments to make your little meat/rice/lettuce parcels out of, although I've noticed that they sometimes don't give you certain accompaniments if you're not Korean (kimchi, raw garlic and chillies, etc) so be sure to ask for those if they're missing. They do an amazing soup of fermented tofu as well. So spicy and SO good!

        • says

          Thank you for all the tips (I have no idea about the names of the restaurants I went there, I just remember once in the street). I have never been to an okonomiyaki place! Next time I'll look for it.
          Thank you also for the Korean restaurant recommandation. I love kimtchi, so I would really be disappointed if I missed it. It sounds really great, not like the Korean restaurants in Switzerland where they make you pay for every tiny plate of pickles or kimchi.

  8. says

    These look so delicious, Charles! What a gorgeous side dish. I went to a restaurant called Fig & Olive for my birthday (they're in LA & NY), and needless to say, the figs there are to-die-for. Yours look pretty dang good though too!

    • says

      Nice – I don't often see fresh figs on menus in restaurants… I'd be interested to see what sort of things this place does with them! Hope you have a good day :)

  9. Mariuccia says

    We have a large fig tree in our backyard and the figs this year are the best we've ever grown. Since there are always too many figs to eat and share each year, we just tried canning some following a recipe very similar to yours so we will be able to enjoy this yummy recipe long after the last fig drops off the tree. Tonight we are going to serve them over crisp lettuce with a little goat cheese.

    • says

      Hi Mariuccia! You're so lucky! I haven't seen figs in the stores for weeks :'( I did buy something called (in French) "Figue de Barbarie". You'd think since it had "Fig" in the title it would be fig-like. Really not at all!!! Your salad sounds wonderful… makes me hungry right now 😀 Have a great weekend :)

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