fig and raspberry cheesecake bars

figs and raspberries on an oatmeal streusel crust

Did you know that figs play nicely with almonds, anise, brown sugar, caramel, cheese, chocolate, cinnamon, cinnamon basil, citrus peel, coconut cream, Cointreau, cornmeal, cream, cream cheese, crème anglaise, crème fraîche, Curaçao, ginger, honey, lavender, lemon, marsala, mint, molasses, nuts, orange, parma ham, peaches, pears, black pepper, port wine, praline, prosciutto, quince, raspberries, rosemary, sherry, sour cream, strawberries, thyme, vanilla, walnuts, and…red wine?

I didn’t, until a big old bowl of pretty young figs appeared suddenly in my kitchen and I turned to this trusty book for counsel. It’s an encyclopedia of sorts, listing pretty much every fruit, vegetable, grain, and meat you could think of along with complementary ingredients. It’s taught me a lot.

Have some calves’ brains on hand but just not sure what to do with them? Vinegar. You can’t go wrong with vinegar, especially white. Maybe some capers too. My suggestion? Run!

How about nectarines? They’re my kind of fruit, happiest when snuggled up against caramel and champagne. They like figs, too.

Aaaaand…[flipping through book]…if you have some squash blossoms on hand you should probably stuff them with goat cheese and throw them into a deep fryer as soon as possible.

Don’t have the book? Based on my careful analysis: bacon and butter go with pretty much everything.

Back to the figs, though. I went with raspberries, cream cheese, sour cream, and citrus on this one. Plus an oatmeal streusel crust.

cheesecake batter over figs and raspberries

What do you think of oats? Glorious cholesterol sponges or simple grains with an excellent PR firm? I’m in the glorious, possibly delusional, cholesterol-sponge camp. Oats + fruit? These things are downright healthy ;)

fig and raspberry cheesecake bar

 

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