Monday, August 23, 2010

Day One Ninety Five - Fig Marriage Mondays

I'm safely back across the pond despite a series of travel hiccups yesterday and twenty four hours of travel, it sure was nice to walk in the door of my sweet little apartment last night. I must say it is weird writing to you all from a desktop computer, my first post in two weeks that has not been written from my iPhone. It sure is easier to re-read my musings and edit them on the actual computer screen.

I got to thinking about seasonal produce and about some of the late August specialities that you see at your local farmer's market and I decided that it could be fun to do a fresh fig marriage Mondays. You commonly see dried figs and other dried fruit paired with cheese, but I think that fresh figs offer a completely different flavor profile, sweet, unctuous, luscious, juicy, and earthy. For some reason they encapsulate for me what an elegant nineteenth century hoop skirt would be if it were to be converted to a food, why I don't know, but there's this roundness exhibited in each. Ok, enough of my wildly creative fantasizing here, let's get down to business and discuss this week's contestants, sound good?

With my mind still in France, I thought that I would provide you with three distinct cow's milk French cheeses to pair with figs today and tomorrow I will give you the results and then a fun figgy fig fig recipe.

Contestant Number #1 : Chaource - This cheese certainly predates you or I, production of this double-cream cow's milk cheese has been going on since the 14th century. Utterly decadent, oozing, mushroomy, and bloomy with a nice crisp finish, it is great when paired with a nice glass of Champagne. But will it be great with our dear figs?

Contestant Number #2 : Comte - Firm, pressed, aged, and hard is this cow's milk cheese traditionally made in the Jura region. It is a classic French cheese with an immensely wide range of flavors from apricots to butterscotch to caramel to grilled toast to heavy cream to hay to chocolate, this cheese has a big profile, full of nuances to delight the tongue! Will its hard consistency be the perfect match for the lusciousness of our fresh figs?

Contestant Number #3 : Bleu d' Auvergne - Produced in the Auvergne region, this grassy, herbaceous, piquant and spicy blue is delish! Moist, sticky, and creamy, this cow's milk blue coats the roof of your mouth perfectly providing you with a nice morsel of savory milky goodness. Is it good enough for our figs though? 

Stay tuned to find out the results tomorrow! 

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