In my mom’s old office, she hung a picture of me from when I was a year and a half old, slathered with figs. I had fig smeared on my cheeks, forehead, arms up to my elbows, and all over my high chair. I have a look of glee on my face probably unrivaled since. Apparently, this was a common occurrence – I have LOVED figs pretty much since I started eating food (although it is arguable that there was more fig on me than in me).
She labeled the photo “Miss Figgy” using one of those old-school labelers from the 80s (you know what I’m talking about, but in case you are under 25 years old, see right). Since my mom was the town doctor, I grew up with the entire town thinking that I love to smear figs all over my face (I stopped doing that a few years ago, thank you very much). The nurses often referred to me as “Miss Figgy” well into my teens. (“Remember that picture your mom had?”) Great.
Last week, I had some leftover cornmeal crusts after the polenta vs. cornmeal pizza crust recipe test. Since it’s fig season (and I still LOVE them), it’s no surprise I turned to figs when I had the idea to create a dessert pizza. A thick, jammy spread of figs laced with balsamic vinegar spread over crunchy cornmeal sounded, well, awesome. Unfortunately, my dad’s tree didn’t have any ripe figs on it, so (gasp) I had to buy some.
[Side note – there may not be any fig jam this year! Between the hail and the birds, my dad’s trees aren’t producing a lot of fruit this year. I’m grieving, as I am sure are many of you who are used to getting fig jam for Christmas.]
However, this recipe will satisfy your fig jam cravings – it tastes pretty close to my jam recipe and you cook it down to a thick jam (any leftovers can be kept in the fridge for about a week and used as jam).
To top it off, I wanted something creamy to drizzle on the pizza. Honey and walnuts seemed like the natural complement to the figs; it made me think of Greece. I experimented with blending walnuts and honey together, and it turns out a 1:1 ratio produces a nice thick and creamy sauce. This turns out pretty thick, so if you wanted it thinner, heat it on the stove prior to drizzling it on the pizza.
This dessert pizza begs to be eaten as the sun goes down in a garden sipping a crisp white wine and savoring the last few days of summer (or first few days of summer if you live in San Francisco). However, I think it will be equally delicious as we transition into fall and drinking a strong glass of red wine while watching the leaves change.
And, in case you’re wondering, I can eat this pizza without smearing it all over my face (although it’s so good you may want to). Enjoy! I can eat it like a big girl now.
Jammy Balsamic Fig Cornmeal Pizza with Honey Walnut Glaze
Print, email, or text the recipe here.
Cornmeal Pizza Crust
- 1 cup medium grind cornmeal
- 2 cups water
- pinch salt
Jammy Balsamic Fig Sauce
- 2 cups figs, chopped
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sugar (optional, depending on sweetness of fruit)
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Honey Walnut Glaze
- 2 tablespoons brown rice syrup or honey
- 2 tablespoons walnuts
Prepare the Crust
- Combine the cornmeal, water, and salt in a sauce pan and bring to a boil, let simmer a couple of minutes until it is thick and creamy. This will go quickly, so keep an eye on it.
- Remove from heat, and spoon into two to four rounds (based on preference – single size servings or larger pizzas) on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Allow to cool to room temperature (20 minutes), and then cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate an hour (or until you are ready to cook).
- Preheat oven to 375. Brush the crusts with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Bake the polenta crusts 35 – 45 minutes, until firm and golden.
Make the Sauce
- Cook all ingredients over medium heat in a skillet. After about 7 or 8 minutes, the fruit will soften. Mash the figs with the back of a wooden spoon. Cook for another ten minutes, until the fruit has broken down and the liquid has thickened (when you draw a spoon through the fruit, the line should stay separated).
Make the Glaze
- While the fruit is cooking, purée the walnuts and honey in a food processor until a thick paste forms. Set aside.
Assemble and Bake
- Spoon sauce on the baked crusts. Drizzle with the honey walnut glaze. Use a butter knife to create swirls.
- Bake for 20 minutes, until small bubbles form in the figs and the glaze browns a little. Serve warm.