The sun came out today, for a while it was almost too warm for my thick woolly tights which have provided such comfort during the recent cold, damp days. I say almost, they remained firmly in place, I know they have many more days of work before they are consigned to the lowest drawer and my favorite maremeko cotton stripey socks are pulled into position.
It came out, warm on my back while I walked back from school, then it tucked itself back behind a big grey cloud which promised nothing but rain. And rain it did, nothing dramatic, but it rained.
It did not dampen my spirits though, oh no I had seen the sun, I had thought about stripey socks and best of all by the time the splatter of odd drops had officially become a downpour, I too was tucked away. Tucked under the rusting girders and glass of the down at heel but still charming and glorious Testaccio market surrounded by oranges and clementines and mandarins. Crate and crates of them, piles, mounds, heaps, even the occasional orderly display of startlingly orange fruit with deep forest green leaves.
It is not the first time I have admired the glorious orange abundance at the market, I have been observing it progress since October when seasonal fruit and vegetables of such colour began creeping onto the stalls. But today I really noticed…. it was beautiful.
I bought a slice and 2 brown paper bags full of orange happiness.
The slice was of pumpkin, carved from a vast specimen, oh but sweet as can be, I tasted a sliver – I do like to taste before I buy – I should make soup, I promised Vincenzo some soup. The Paper bag was of oranges, Navels from Catania for my Sicilian…..and me.
This, the first bag is for eating just so.
The second bag is for juice and slicing and serving with dates, the ones I bought yesterday, the ones I can’t stop eating.
Sliced oranges with slivers of medjool dates. That’s it, thats the recipe, or should I call it an idea, yes, an idea.
It may only be an idea but I promise you it is a delicious one.
This is a pure and clean and sweet citrusy plateful to brighten even the most jaded palate. It celebrates two exquisite ingredients, allowing both to shine while nodding compliments to each other. Talking of fine partnerships you could serve this alongside your deep dark chocolate cake, cleansing the palate before you dive into your slice.
We ate this a few days ago after a good lunch of spinach and ricotta ravioli with sage butter, it was a fine lunch.
Sliced oranges and medjool dates
- 4 oranges
- 8 medjool dates
Using a very sharp knife you cut away the peel and pith from 4 of your most beautiful, flavoursome orange.
Cut each orange into thin slices – saving precious juices- and lay the slices on a large plate.
Open your dates and slide out the stone then cut each date into fine slivers and scatter over the orange slices.
Pour the saved juices over the orange slices.
Serve cool but not too cold.