Figs are supposed to be one of the oldest fruit trees ever cultivated on Earth. I always think of the history trapped in their seeds when I gently pull away their soft, leathery jackets, speckled with constellations. Apple, pomegranate, fig – who truly knows which legendary fruit hung from the tree of knowledge – but tasting them, I can sympathise with Eve’s temptation in that lush oasis. They are perfectly primal, bursting with drowsy sunlight and ancient seduction. When I eat them, I can hear the roar of the colosseum crowds.
They sit on my table like little time bombs, and I wonder at the other places they’ve stayed in their journey through the millennia. Low tables in desert palaces, in Moroccan bowls of fine blue glass. In senator’s villas, listening silently to bloody intrigues. Renaissance tables laden with golden goblets; in the palm of an Egyptian queen. I eat them slowly, savouring their delicacy and texture; wondering at the secrets hidden away in their sweet, honeyed flesh.