Pink Wine is for Chicks

Culinarily speaking, summertime is a feminine season. Sure, the dudes are out by the grill — sucking beer, flipping burgers and talking pre-season football. But it is the salads, the lightly seared skinless chicken breast pailliards, the peaches and the pink wines that prevail.

Pink wine and figs

I sit here drinking my pink wine and looking at a bowl of figs, feeling emasculated. By late August, I’m wondering where is the cold weather and a long-braised leg of some animal? More

The Boy & the Fig

People, I find, either love figs or hate them. Mostly it’s less about the food than the tree. If you love figs and you have a fig tree, you are thrilled every late summer when the branches are nearly exploding with ripe fruit. If you hate figs, you despair as the ground of your garden or driveway are littered with gooey, sticky, fly-covered fruit. Others have fig trees and are merely agnostic about them. “Oh, yeah… it’s a nice tree. But we never eat the figs. No idea what to do with them.”

Eat them, my friends, eat them.

My friends with fig trees are never surprised when they invite us over in the late summer and find me clinging simian-like amidst the high branches of a tree or scaling a wall. Some of them look at me skeptically and ask what on earth I’m going to do with the fruits — fig haters, they. Here’s what I teach them:

There’s something sexy and carnal about figs. The way they hang ripely. The way they burst open and reveal their ruby insides. Even the leaves bring to mind Renaissance paintings of Adam & Eve in the garden, body parts barely covered by fig leaves, succumbing to the allure of temptation. But I digress…

I dreamed of having my own fig tree. Last week, we had a surveyor out. We’d always thought our property extended beyond the fence but weren’t sure. I was walking the additional half acre or so we’d picked up in the process with him, and he pointed to a tree. “Well, that’s a strange looking tree!” I looked over, and there hidden among the oaks, a beautiful tall fig tree, reaching its limbs to clear the canopy. Right on the far corner of my own property! So maybe next summer, if you’re lucky, you won’t find me lurking in your yard and scaling your wall…