Sunday, July 25, 2010

Figs: Pure Romance

I ducked into the Whole Foods to buy dip, and what should appear before my eyes but a display of fresh turkey figs? They were perfectly ripe and they were on sale. When the universe is speaking to you this clearly, ignore it at your own peril.

Soft, fragrant, and curvy figs are among our most sensuous fruits. Bite or cut into one: the dusky skin just barely offers resistance, then yields to reveal white flesh and glistening pink jelly. The taste is as delicate as a caress.

Match the sweet murmur of figs with a nibble of black pepper and a nip of goat cheese. Soften the cheese’s bite with a little dollop of honey. Serve these to your sweetheart as a light dessert, maybe with a moscato or a glass of lemonade, as the sun slips out of the summer sky. Breathe in the scents of figs and summer as evening fades into night. Draw your lover gently into your arms, place your lips close to her ear, and whisper:

“Are you going to eat that last one?”

Figs with Honeyed Goat Cheese
Sometimes you can find goat cheese with honey in the schmantzy cheese section of the grocery store. If you don’t see it, just get some chevre and put it in the blender with a couple of tablespoons of honey. Taste and add as you go until it is a nice balance of goat-tart and honey-sweet.

Fresh ripe figs
Honeyed goat cheese (see note above)at room temperature
Fresh ground black pepper

Trim any stems off the figs. Slice them in half the long way. Lay the fig halves cut side up.

Stir up the cheese so it is soft. Using two spoons, drop ½ to 1 teaspoon of cheese on the center hollow of each fig half. Arrange the figs smartly on a serving plate.

Grind a little black pepper over the figs. Bat your eyes a little as you serve them.