Sometimes when I publish a blog post, I feel silly doing so. Why should it be okay to talk about subjects of food, nutrition, feeling good in our body, and Whole Nourishment when the world has real problems? The war in Syria, terrorist attacks in Europe, Brexit, the ludicrous election of Trump, the hate displayed in Charlottesville and around the world, and most recently, a typhoon in Asia, a massive landslide in Switzerland, the death of 5 climbers in Austria, and the absolute devastation of hurricane Harvey in Houston. I could name more, but that's not the point. It's important to acknowledge the state of the world and keep going.
I always come back to this, perhaps overly-simplistic, conclusion: If we don't have well, able-bodied, energized individuals to respond to our community's most pressing needs, we don't progress as a society.
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs suggests there are certain basic human needs that must be met before fulfilling more complex ones. Food is a fundamental need. Therefore, being proactive about our wellness is not trivial, it's practical. The key, however, is to shape a vision of wellness that uniquely works for each of us and our lifestyle, rather than chase after a fake, unrealistic one-size-fits-all standard, propagated by media. Anytime we diet, restrict, or even "eat clean" out of a desire to control or lose weight, we reinforce a primal sense of deprivation in our body and mind, undermining efforts to fulfill our most basic needs.
So I continue to do what I do, hoping it makes a difference for someone, somewhere. And today that leaves us with a small bite of pleasure that's worth celebrating in spite of it all.
It's fig season here! I thought I'd miss picking wild blackberries in the forest behind our house in Switzerland. But we have fabulous fig trees in our Madrid neighborhood, which more than makes up for the blackberries. One tree I secretly pick from on morning walks. The other tree is more than 60 years old and belongs to our neighbors across the street. They generously share their figs, and after bringing us a second bowl-full last week, I decided to do something special.
These crostini are a twist on the Balsamic Fig Pistachio Toast you may remember from a few years ago. In today's version, the combination of figs, smoked mozzarella, mint, lemon, and honey is simple but delicious -- the perfect way to highlight fresh figs. Hope you guys enjoy!
Fig, Honey & Smoked Mozzarella Crostini
Makes 12 Crostini
- 1 small baguette, cut into 12 slices
- Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
- 12 slices of smoked mozzarella (or smoked Scamorza)
- 10-12 small figs, sliced
- 12 mint leaves
- Honey, for drizzling
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Toast baguette slices and place on a serving platter. Immediately drizzle each slice with extra-virgin olive oil.
- Top with smoked mozzarella and fig slices, overlapping figs slightly. Tear mint leaves (if large) and place on top and in between fig slices. Drizzle with honey, making sure honey falls onto sections of bread and cheese. Finish with lemon zest.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!