The long, balmy days of midsummer are gone, but before fall firmly settles into place, we have loads of late summer bounty to enjoy. This arugula, quinoa, and fresh fig salad isn't just tasty, beautiful, and seasonal – it’s jammed with nutrients, too.
This Fresh Fig Salad Boasts Mega Health Benefits
Although dried figs are available throughout the year, there is nothing quite like a fresh, juicy fig in the late summer months. Fragrant and oh-so-sweet, fresh figs are a seasonal fruit to gobble up while you can.
Fresh figs are abundant in a variety of vitamins and minerals including vitamin B6 and K, copper, manganese, calcium, and potassium. They also contain a hefty dose of fiber, which aids in digestive regularity, and antioxidants noted to reduce free radical damage and protect cells against disease.
In fact, a variety of different antioxidants are found in the leaves, fruit, pulp, and skin of fresh figs, according to this 2015 study. (Dried figs, BTW, may contain even more antioxidants, which is a good excuse to snack on them when the fresh ones aren't available.)
A 2014 review showed that figs have been used in over 40 medicinal applications for the treatment of diseases like anemia, cancer, diabetes, liver diseases, paralysis, skin diseases, and ulcers, among others.
There are hundreds of varieties of figs, but only a few can commonly be found at the supermarket. Look for Black Mission figs, which are deep purple with pink flesh, or Brown Turkey figs, which have maple-brown skin and purple-pink flesh. Other varieties to look for are Sierra, Calimyrna, King, and Kadota figs.
The Flavors of this Juicy Fig Salad are Simply Delicious
This fresh fig salad is made up of fresh and peppery arugula, quinoa, pumpkin seeds, and a tangy balsamic vinegar dressing. If you close your eyes for just a moment, as you chew on one bite of this salad, you just might think you're in Italy! It’s great to have alongside a picnic or barbecue, and makes a pretty presentation at dinner parties – especially if you choose a simple yet elegant serving platter.
We're big fans of this beautiful serving platter from Made In, hand-crafted in England from high-alumina vitrified china for a strong finish so durable the company guarantees it chip-free for a year. It's no wonder it's a stalwart of some of the world's best restaurants and hotels. And there's something so elegant about serving such a brightly colored salad on a white dish where the colors pop.
To turn up the Italian experience, we love finishing our salads, pastas and veg, with a drizzle of our favorite fruity, extra-virgin olive oil, Manni's Oil of Life. Made from the first press of superior-grade, antioxidant-rich organic olives grown in rich organic volcanic soil straight from Tuscany (and it's literally shipped overnight from the mill). This elegant, nutrient-packed oil boasts a mild yet complex aroma that complements the seasonal flavors in this salad without overpowering them.
It's a decidedly delicious – and beautiful – way to savor the end of sweet summer.
- Prep Time
Balsamic Vinegar Salad Dressing
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 ½ tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- ½ teaspoon honey or agave
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- 4 large handfuls fresh arugula
- 8 fresh figs, quartered
- ½ cup cooked and cooled quinoa
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
- First, prepare the dressing. Add olive oil, Dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar, and honey or agave to a small bowl and whisk well to combine. Season with sea salt and pepper to taste.
- Add the arugula and cooked quinoa to a large salad bowl. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat completely. Add the figs and pumpkin seeds, and toss to combine.
- Serve fig salad immediately and enjoy!
Related on Organic Authority
*Note! This article contains affiliate links that are independently sourced and vetted by our editorial team which we may earn a commission on. This helps us reduce the number of ads we serve on Organic Authority and help deliver you a better user experience. We are here to help you navigate the overwhelming world of consumer products to source and uncover thoughtfully made, conscious clean products.