12 fresh figs
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon orange juice
1 cup chilled heavy cream
Preheat oven to 300°F/150°C.
Prick bottom of each fig several times and stand figs in a buttered 9 to 10-inch flameproof gratin dish or ovenproof skillet. Sprinkle figs with 1/3 cup sugar, then add water to dish.
Bake figs in middle of oven, basting twice with pan juices, until tender, about 30 minutes. Transfer dish to stovetop, then add 1/4 cup orange juice and bring to a boil over moderately high heat. Remove from heat.
Juices should be syrupy. If pan juices are too thin, transfer figs to a shallow serving bowl, then boil juices until syrupy and slightly thickened, 3 to 5 minutes, and pour over figs.
Beat cream with remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and the extra 1 tablespoon of orange juice using an electric mixer until it holds soft peaks.
Serve figs, warm or at room temperature, with syrup and cream.
Makes 6 servings.
Date: August 22, 2006