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Figs and Ham: A Gods Meal

Three typical Mediterranean trees, which I love, are: The cypress, the fig tree and the olive tree.

The cypress is associated to the death. Our cemeteries are full of them, it was thought that its large shape erected from earth to the sky would help the souls of the dead people to reach heaven. But the cypress is also associated to hospitality, and this is what I really want to tell you about.

Here in Catalonia, long time ago, there was a tradition followed by most of the Catalan country houses, called Masias: they used the cypresses as a sign to show their hospitality grade: One cypress beside the house would mean that poor people, or priests travelling had the right to stop for a small quantity of food: some wine+bread+some sausage, two cypresses meant that they could get a full lunch or dinner and three cypresses showed the right to have 2 meals there and also a space to spend the night.

I’m adopting this tradition here in my blog and from now on, this will be a 2 Cypresses blog.

The second tree I love is the Fig tree and specially the variety that has two fruits: the first one during spring and the second one during summer. This fig tree is called Higuera brevera and the Brevas (spring fruit) are bigger, more flavourful and whiter inside than figs (summer fruit), which are sweeter than brevas and more red inside.

Now the recipe I’ll show you is not even a recipe because there’s no cooking involved, you will only need the following ingredients: Iberian acorn ham (European and Japanese whom want to buy some, follow this link) and figs or brevas and a good glass of wine. It’s as easy as peeling the fig and cutting it in two. Then wrap it with the Ham and get ready for one of the most amazing sensory experiences of your life!!! The contrast of flavours, textures, and sensations you will feel will teletransport you directly to the Mediterranean :D. If you can’t get Iberian acorn ham, (if you are in the States follow this link to buy some online) try it with some serrano ham… this will only teletransport you 100 meters from your house ;-).

The bad news are that my camera broke! It’s been with me for 6 years now and suddenly without a word… it passed away! I think it saw the white light (the LCD screen became white all of a sudden). Is this a sign? My husband couldn’t believe this had happened when a week or two ago I mentioned that I would like to have a more professional camera… It must be a sign! I swear I didn’t do anything wrong with it :D. I saw this beauty on sale: Nikon D40 with a 18-55mm and couldn’t resist the temptation… So today’s special dressing, as you might have guessed – smart friends – is: I got a Nikon camera! From Paul Simon.

You will see that the figs’ pictures are taken with an old camera I had at home and the trees ones belong to my shinny Nikon :D! We are getting to know each other, but see the difference!

And finally the Olive tree with its twisted trunk and wonderful shade is so basic in our diet and culture. But this post is getting too long and I will talk about Olive trees, Olive oil and Olives some other day during next month.

Meanwhile, eat healthy and enjoy food and life! Buen fin de semana! Have a great weekend :D


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05/30/2008 · 14:30 h by Peter G

Another beautiful, informative and inspiring post Nuria. I love your little stories and how they make the recipe seem more “human”. Figs and jamon is another great combination. AND..welcome to the Nikon D40 club! Thats my camera chica too! If you have any preguntas you can email me ok? Adios chica!

05/30/2008 · 14:37 h by Núria

Really Peter? Same camera? Hey!!! That’s great news :D You shouldn’t have said that… now I’ll be asking you all my doubts! Muchas gracias, guapo!

05/30/2008 · 15:45 h by glamah16

Interestinf tidbits and tasty morsels. Figs, ham, yummm!

05/30/2008 · 16:22 h by Marija

Hi Núria, so nice you stopped by! I’ve been reading your blog for some time. What a feeling to see a comment from a blogger you read!

05/30/2008 · 20:12 h by Roni

ok, I need to try me some figs!!

Thanks for stopping by! Glad you liked my site!


05/30/2008 · 23:31 h by Judy @ No Fear Entertaining

Another great post Nuria!!! I love the story about the cypress trees. I have always loved the elegant look of them.

Have fun with your new camera. I’m just hoping mine will break, fall in the pool, or suffer some other crazy mishap!!!

05/31/2008 · 1:43 h by Ben

Another beautiful and informative post, my friend. I guess I am adopting the two cypresses rule, too. And I love figs, too. There was a fig tree in my parents house and I loved to eat their fruit in the summer. It is just delicious!

05/31/2008 · 2:13 h by Barbara

I did not know that about the cypress trees. How interesting.

05/31/2008 · 5:32 h by Laurie Constantino

Your cypress story is so wonderful – hat a rich tradition of hospitality inyour part of the world. As for figs and ham – I’ve had it often with prosciutto and love it (also melon and prosciutto, yum) but someday if I’m lucky, I’ll have it with iberian acorn ham. I can’t wait!

05/31/2008 · 8:12 h by Ivy

Ι hope your received my previous comment as it disappeared. I was saying that I am jealous of your new camera.
Iberian ham with fig must be delicious. I always like the combination of savory with sweet. In Cyprus we eat watermelon or melon with halloumi.

05/31/2008 · 8:59 h by Núria

Hola Courtney :D And the season just started MMmmmmmm!

Thanks for your nice words Marija :D. I didn’t know you were a reader of Spanish Recipes! Hope you enjoy it and I’ll be visiting your blog too from now on :D

Hi Roni! Welcome to Spanish Recipes! Figs are so savory!!! ONe of my favourite fruits :D

Yes Judy! I agree with you… elegant is the word!
He, he, he… I think your camera has a caducity date written somewhere ;-)

Thanks Ben! Yes, I also have nice memories of a fig tree… A huge tree and me and my brother picking the figs and eating them under its shade :D

Hola Barbara! It seems that Romans and Greeks already had some symbologies with the cypress too… so it even goes further back :D

Hola Laurie! So glad you liked the story :D We also enjoy melon con jamon (melon and prosciutto). And yes Iberian Acorn Ham makes the difference. Hope you get to try it soon :D

Hola Ivy! Didn’t see your previous comment. Yes, the sweet and salty combo works so good!!! We also have melon con jamon here… I love it!

05/31/2008 · 9:54 h by Swati: Sugarcraft India

Hello Nuria.. You live in a beautiful
country.. Barcelona.. One of the top holiday spots..!!
I am so glad your comment led me to this wonderful blog of yours..Its so informative and full of warmth.. I would love to come here again and again :))

05/31/2008 · 12:09 h by Bellini Valli

I love the story of the cypress tree Nuria. When I was in Greece I saw them dotting the landscape, but it wasn’t until later that I knew what type of tree it was.I am a lover of Nikon too:D

05/31/2008 · 14:47 h by Núria

Wow Swati! So many nice words in 6 lines :D. Thank you darling. I also plan to visit your beautiful blog from now on :D

Hola Val :D
Is your camera a Nikon too? I’m completely in love with my brand new one♥

05/31/2008 · 14:54 h by Jen of A2eatwrite

Fascinating post, Nuria! Figs are my favorite fruit. Hands down. I wish they grew in Michigan. And I love figs and ham – I’ve had this here in the U.S. on my balcony. With white wine. Absolute heaven!

05/31/2008 · 16:32 h by Peter M

Nuria, if it’s any consolation, the photos look fabulous with the new camera…the old camera treated you well, on with the new.

I love figs and ham, be it prosciutto or jamon. Both are best unadultered.

06/01/2008 · 23:31 h by Heather

Oh, Núria, this is a wonderful post. I love hearing about Catalan heritage and tradition. And your photos look beautiful (with both cameras)!

Ham and figs really is food of the gods.

06/02/2008 · 6:19 h by Mallory Elise

Spanish ham, and figs. The only thing that could make it better would be if you added Cheese. ^_^

06/02/2008 · 7:07 h by Núria

Ah Jen! I wish we could eat them all year long!!!!

Thanks darling Peter :D Counting the days until you get under a fig tree?

Thanks so much Heather :D. I guess I’m so lucky to live here!!! Food is gorgeous ;-)

He, he, that one made me giggle, Mallory :D.

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