food to glow

feel good food that's good for you

fig and labneh tartinesDon’t let the fancy name fool you, tartine is just French for ‘open-faced sandwich’. And I find it easier to say than the Danish smørrebrød, or the Finnish voileipä – the latter of which I have eaten when ages ago I did some work in Helsinki. Cured herring and butter as I recall. I ate it to be polite but I will admit it did taste better washed down with some local beer and perhaps a shot of Finlandia vodka.

I wasn’t working while I was eating/drinking, btw.:-). 

The usual open-faced sandwich is savoury, often with a mayonnaise or sour cream-bound topping. But this is a little different, being both sweet and savoury. My little sourdough toasts feature a fusion of Middle Eastern labneh (a type of easily made – or bought – soft cheese), a touch of maple syrup and cardamom, and slivers of beautiful, dusky black fig. And it is super easy to make for a breakfast, light lunch, appetiser or for a wholesome snack.

No mollifying alcohol required here.

homemade labneh

homemade goat’s milk yogurt labneh – easy and so delicious!

Let me tell you I had a difficult time stopping to take these photos because 1) these tartines were going to be my brunch, and it was going on 1 o’clock, and 2) they are just so delicious. The cool lactic tang of the labneh with the soft slight crunch of the figs, all elegantly presided over by the sweet aroma of maple and cardamom – pretty, and pretty irresistible.

As figs become more available over the next fews months I will be making more of these – perhaps not waiting until I feel almost faint to eat them. 🙂 But even if you can’t easily find good quality figs – which is a must for figs – do try this with organic or well-washed peaches or nectarines. The flavours I describe go perfectly well with these fruits. Cherries too.

What have you been putting on toast these days? Have you started to see figs where you shop? What will you do with them? Please feel free to share your own recipes in the comments below. Btw, I am getting the best figs from the small grocer’s shops in Stockbridge, Edinburgh. They seem to be much nicer than those in the supermarkets right now.

Another fig recipe from me: Cardamom-spiced Fig and Plum Galette

Figgy recipes from friends:

Fig, Almond and Smoked Cheese Salad with an Ottolenghi inspired Dressing (via Laura at How To Cook Good Food)

Fig, Halloumi and Hazelnut Salad (via Jeanne at Cook Sister)

and from Sarah at Maison Cupcake, Mini Fig Galettes (just three ingredients!)

fig and labneh tartine

Fig and Labneh Tartines with Maple and Cardamom (ie posh toast!)

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Don’t have labneh? Use another soft cheese (goat’s is perfect) or any good spreadable cheese (or vegan ‘cheeze’) you fancy that may go with ripe figs.

Hint: Do use the best ingredients when making something as simple as this – there’s no room for inferior food to hide! K x

2 ripest figs, washed and stems removed (I prefer black or dusky purple ones from Turkey instead of the green ones. But that’s just me)

4 tbsp soft cheese of choice – I made goat’s milk labneh (you could use any good yogurt to make labneh rather than goat’s)

2 tbsp best maple syrup

small pinch of ground cardamom OR ground seeds from 1 green pod of cardamom

small palmful of unsalted pistachios, chopped

4 slices good bread, such as a wholegrain sourdough or a fruited sourdough


1. Toast the bread lightly on both sides. Leave to cool. I lean two slices against each other to ‘air’ out.

2. Spread the labneh or other soft cheese equally between the toasts. Slice the figs and lay over the toasts.

3. Mix the maple syrup and cardamom in a tiny bowl or teacup. Pour the syrup over the figgy toasts and top with chopped pistachios. Eat and enjoy.

Want more? Add a few small shards of Parma or Serrano ham to add a salty, savoury note

No figs? Try this with organic peaches, cherries or nectarines for a heavenly treat.

Hate cardamom? Go for it with ground cinnamon

I’ve bought/made the labneh. What else can I do with it? Go to my How To Make Labneh post for loads of ideas. 🙂 

fig and labneh tartines

very pretty 'food to glow' silver spoon form my good friend niki at unified space

very pretty ‘food to glow’ silver spoon from my good friend niki at unified space


54 thoughts on “Fig and Labneh Tartines with Maple and Cardamom (i.e. posh toasts!)

  1. Love it! Saving it to try later:) very nice photos!

    1. Thank you. I hope you get some lovely ripe figs for this. Are they around where you are?

      1. Yes, we get really good figs here:) I just bought some last week..

  2. Sounds like a perfectly flavorful brunch. And it is so gorgeous too. I love gorgeous food! Your photographs are stunning.

    1. Thanks so much! I had to crop out my hand though – too wrinkly close up 😉

  3. Deena Kakaya says:

    Swoon! Pulpy, smooth, delicate sweet juiciness…and so simple. I just imagined a pic of you eating this dish…that is some serious dedication to the pic (not polishing it off in milliseconds) x

    1. I know, right? It took nerves of steel, I tell you 😉 Glad you like this, Deena. I hope today has been kind to you so far, my friend x

  4. Divine! My husband is Lebanese and we eat/make a ton of labne and figs, but never in such a beautiful and scrumptious combination! We can’t wait to try this!

    1. Wowwee! Love your comment! If you get a chance to make this up let me know. Maybe send a pic through FB perhaps?

      1. We’ll def. post a pic on FB when we make it!

  5. The figs in mygarden are not ready for eating yet, so I will save your recipe 🙂

    1. Great to hear, Irene. Save one or two back for this, for sure. I have a plum and apple tree, but sadly no fig tree. Lucky you!

      1. I live in Spain where we are able to grow a lot of different kind of fruits 🙂

      2. Ahhh. Then double lucky you! A wonderful climate for people *and* plants!

      3. Yes 😀

  6. Lovely collection of flavours Kellie ☺️☺️

  7. Oh geez, I’m drooling. Really delicious-looking tartine, Kelly. I’m coming home this weekend and hoping to be greeted by figs at the market!

    1. That should be a luscious sight, Katie. Thanks for stopping my. Now, wipe your mouth 😉

  8. Francesca says:

    Looks amazing

  9. Andi says:

    This looks so amazing! I just tried figs for the first time last weekend and can’t wait to try this!

  10. kobrien87 says:

    This looks delicious, very appetising! 🙂

  11. julietwilson says:

    that looks and sounds delicious! Makes me want to try to be more adventurous with toast, currently it’s either hummus or marmite and almond butter. Thanks for visiting my blog!


    1. Hi Juliet! Well, I love both of those very much. Especially the almond butter. I’ve even been known to smear a little Marmite ON the almond butter. I hope that’s not too weird. 🙂

  12. narf77 says:

    Very fancy, very beautiful. I doubt that any pistachios or figs that made it into Chez Serendipity would last long enough to be placed with reverence on top of that tasty looking toast. I reckon I would guzzle them first, then I would be left with the sourdough that I would toast and eat slathered with avocado and topped with tomato and then that yoghurt would be turned into a delicious pound cake for Stevie-boy. A very different take on your tartine but all the same ingredients handled with loving care (except for the figs and pistachio’s which would be handled greedily with both fists 😉 )

  13. Liz Posmyk of Bizzy Lizzy's Good Things says:

    How very exquisite, Kellie… this is my kind of food!

  14. Sounds heavenly Kellie…I love figs….one of my favourites is to cut a deep cross into the tops of fresh figs, and the squeezing them gently open. Pop a little goats cheese into the centre and roast or bake for just a few minutes. Drizzle with honey and scatter any nuts…perhaps toasted in honey and sesame seeds…over the top. Summer in a mouthful 🙂

    1. A perfect treat with some fresh rocket leaves. I do similar but we are too greedy to bother with baking them!

  15. I’ve been so enamored of peaches and berries that I’ve been ignoring the figs! I’ll need to remedy that soon after seeing your scrumptious tartines!

  16. rovinglights says:

    Oh my, these look wonderful. The photos are beautiful. I’m a fan of all things figgy but the cardamom, pistachios and maples syrup take it to a new level ;D these are easily all some of my favourite flavours

  17. aliyajade says:

    Beautiful pictures as ever

  18. Kellie! What is going on with your blog?! Totally different look from last time I was here! And it does look fab my friend!

    I’m working on a toast for dinner series and am shooting the 2nd and 3rd instalments this weekend! We’re always so aligned with our posts… great minds! I love this fancied up toast with the labneh and figs. So good! I can’t wait to sink my teeth into one of these!

    1. OMG! I’m aiming for a tartines collection!! What are we like?! We have to meet up sometime within the year. I bet we’ll finish each other’s sentences. 😉 I await your toast for dinner series with greedy anticipation.

  19. Looks amazing!

  20. teacupcake says:

    This is such a gorgeous photo 🙂 x

  21. ann says:

    Scottish strawberries take a bit of beating at this time of year. If they are a bit unripe I have found that 30 secs in the microwave turns them into lucious, juicy berries. They would sub for figs in a cooler climate. Love your pics.

    1. I love your ripening by microwave trick. Brilliant!

  22. Oh how perfect this time of the year is. Figs are so good, I love their seedy crunch and your other flavours are so ideal here. I could eat this any time of the day, the photos are too tempting!

  23. yum kellie these look divine.. thanks for sharing! definitely craving one of these tartines now – the flavour combinations are perfect. love it!

    1. Thanks so much, Thalia. Lovely name!

  24. Anita Menon says:

    Sounds so good. I made some gluten free bread yesterday. This seems like the best way to make a snack out of it

    1. Yes, it would be a good way to use up some gluten free bread, which I know doesn’t last as long and needs toasting to ‘perk it up’.Thanks for commenting, Anita. 🙂

  25. Sophie33 says:

    MMMMMMM,…A lovely tasty recipe! I can make this soon with fresh figs from my own tree! 🙂 Delicious looking too! 🙂

    1. So lucky to have your own fig tree. We go to a house on the coast that has a fig tree in the back garden but always seem to go when the fruits are just starting to grow!

  26. That looks delicious!

  27. I was so excited when I went to the grocery the other day and saw figs! This will be an amazing way to use them. thanks for sharing!

  28. Beautiful image! Never had an actual real live fig before. Would love to try this.

  29. whipadish says:

    Looks so delicious – feel like I could sink my teeth right into it. Great recipe and photography! You’ve got my thumbs up!! 😀

  30. Newtrition4U says:

    Reblogged this on Newtrition4u.

  31. Janice @FarmersgirlCook says:

    I really do love the flavour of figs. This simple way of preparing them would suit me very nicely at any time of day.

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