In all the much-rain and hail-laced plants and soggy leaves clinging to every inch of patio, yard, cars, roofs and shoes as you come in the house, and with my general indolence and can’t-get-going which cloudy gray dampened days engender, I just HAVE to let somebody know there’s something GRACIOUS going on around here. Amongst several such niceties, a small jewel-of-a-moment from the past week:
The jars of home-canned marvels brought by our September guests Ben and Lil were absolutely beautiful. And amongst them was a jar of Brown Turkey Figs (first I’d ever eaten, unless there were some amongst all the jars that we canned together LAST year). These are stained-glass sunshine.
They were an absolutely divine---luscious and tender and dripping with that lovely syrup, and we ate them with a nice cheese plate, all the rich and heavy and sharp and musty cheeses enhanced by the bites of fig.
There’s a velvety
Gouda in there, a Morbier with its
tell-tale little stripe of ash, a Stilton with dried cranberries, a St. Andre Triple, and a “cow’s milk” wedge, silky and
sharp like I’d imagine a young Parmigianna, before the wheels are set to rest on
the curing shelves.
The block in the middle is a little piece cut from an immense wheel of “fig paste studded with almonds” at the cheese shop. That one was absolutely unnecessary, just sort of dark-flavored, with the tooth-yanking consistency of an old-fashioned Slo-Poke bar.
I resisted the urge to pick up a fig by its stem and drop it into my open mouth, with the juices running and the fig-flesh a soft mouthful. Instead, I cut tiny wedges like cantaloupe smiles, lifting them with the point of my small knife, and they were a superb combination with all of the cheeses.
We haven’t yet opened any of the preserves---we’re saving them for a frosty night, when we’ll crank up the old
to slide in the first pan of catheads of the season. Those are special occasions all on their