Wednesday, July 20, 2011


 NOTE: Before I get going, I must state unambiguously, I am a fan of the "empty calorie" dessert as long as it meets a few criteria; The flavor, texture and experience of eating it should be decadent and satisfying, and the ingredients should be of the highest quality possible.
Such criteria leaves a very flexible border.  So of course, a few bites of the very "foodie-est" chocolate cake make the list, as does a surprise rocket-popsicle from an ice cream truck at the end of a backpacking trip.  But cool whip mixed with chocolate-pudding-from-a-box to make "chocolate whip" never does, nor would 'cookies' from a "100 calorie pack."  Neither is really food, and neither meets any of the 1st three criteria.

The fruit from Eastern Washington is starting (at last) to roll in.
And I realize something odd about myself - I have gotten out of the habit of eating things that are sweet.

Part of it is the "do without dessert" ethic that has ruled much of my life.  This is an idea I carry around in my head from a variety of influences.
Much of the dessert I've eaten has come only after I am full.
Much of the dessert I've eaten has been "empty" calories; fat, sugar & flavorings.
Many of the people I've eaten dessert around spend a huge amount time talking about how fat it will make them as they were eating it (what a buzzkill).
Much of the dessert I've eaten was an afterthought, an extra.

As a result, in my Puritan-influenced mind, dessert is, on a daily basis, too much.  Sweet, the flavor of dessert, is then left out of my daily food intake.

And only part of it is this "fear of dessert," another part comes from the years when I only got my hands on under ripe fruit.  There was a point where I actually believed I stopped liking nectarines (my Very Favorite Fruit!), because every time I got one, I didn't like it.

But then, I got my hands on a perfectly ripe, tender and unbruised specimen.  Ah Hahhh!

So as I restart the tradition of Dessert, and fruit as dessert in my house -

The moral of the story is - plain fruit as dessert ONLY works with beautiful, ripe, in season fruit.
A banana in November, or a crunchy, mealy, tasteless peach in March do not.

So for the moment, bring on the cherries, and I'll figure out what to do with the excess so they CAN be enjoyed in November.  But I'm not going to fool myself and believe they would work "fresh and plain" in November.  They'll need a little sprucing up.  

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