I love fruit as is—plain and unadulterated. It’s one of the reasons I love summer: gorgeous, ripe, succulent pieces of yum waiting to be picked and eaten.
I have a lot of memories that involve fruit in cars (weird, huh?)
In Italy, my family has a peach orchard not far from our house, and every year my aunt would drive us all up there and we would pick a few crates of peaches. Driving home from the orchard, the smell in the car was incredible—the balmy summer air that blew through the car windows was tinged with the sweetness of the peaches. There really is nothing like it.
In Cairo, my grandfather—bless his heart—would come to Friday family lunches with a fruit as a gift for my Teta. If I was lucky I would get to go buy it with him—watermelon, guava, mangoes—all scents mingling with the sticky heat and humidity that is so common to Cairo in the summer.
It’s now the end of summer, but the fruit that’s in season is still glorious. Every year there’s something that sticks out. This year it’s been figs. I’ve been able to get them for a large part of the summer, and there’s still crates of them at the market.
I bought about a dozen figs (the purple ones, not the green ones) at the market the other day, and I am SO glad I did. They were perfectly ripe and gorgeously ruby on the inside, and they were just the thing when we had guests over and I had to pull out an impromptu Mediterranean dessert—stuffed figs.
The key to this is minimalism; not too much of any of the other ingredients—you want the fruit to shine through. Placed on a cake stand or platter, these are sure to impress.