Figs and films….

I love this time of year.

It’s Oscars season.

This is not for the faint hearted. Not everyone gives a fig about it; but for us, it’s serious.

There are Films to be seen. Note the capital. These are Grown Up Films which we can Talk Seriously About.

‘Oscars season’ is a fairly involved process where everything that’s been nominated is written down and slowly ticked off.

Opinions need to be formed in the lead up to the big day, invitations sent, menus decided on.

You’d be forgiven for thinking it sounds a little like a wedding. Maybe the reason we got through the wedding relatively unscathed last year was because it happened at the same time/ instead of Oscars celebrations.

I’ve always loved that Oscars coincides with the fig season in Sydney. The very first year The Hungry One and I celebrated Oscars together we sat down to a menu for two which involved grilled figs wrapped in proscuitto and stuffed with goats cheese and thyme. I think there was pink wine involved somewhere too.

In the lead up to this year’s celebrations there have been a few marathon sessions of viewing which start at ours. Films which involve staplegun attacks, missing children, pedophiles, rubber tubing and full frontal Nazi nudity require serious sustenance. Whatever’s served before we head off to see them should celebrate what’s in season, be zesty enough to keep you awake and suitably comforting so you feel ok when it all gets a little bleak for your liking.

So while we’re still under negotiations for the menu for Monday, before we confronted the double header of Doubt and Revolutionary Road three of us sat down to an impromptu pasta that helped us give a fig about who was going to win best actress.

Fig, goats cheese and red onion tortellini with a side of radicchio

Take a packet of the Barilla dried three cheese tortellini that you’ve got stashed in the cupboard for when a carb craving takes over. If you don’t have some- go and buy some immediately. The sweetly distended cowboy hat shapes and the slightly crumbly reconstituted cheese filling are exactly what you need when the horizon looks a little rough.

Take two red onions and cut them into petals the size of orange segments. Caramelize them in a fry pan with a knob of butter and a splash of olive oil. You want them to wilt and subside, like you kind of hoped Kate Winslet would.

Once they’re well on their way ( it will take around 10 – 15 minutes) take three fresh figs and cut them into thin slivers. It’s ok to eat a couple. I know you want to.

Put the tortellini on to boil. Add to the onions a spoonful of fig jam (the Fourth Village Providore in Mosman makes an outstanding one), two cubes of marinated goats curd and two sprigs of rosemary, which you’ve snipped into verdant dandruff. Add the fresh fig slivers, a little olive oil, a generous sprinkling of good salt, a storm of black pepper and the cooked ravioli.

Top with fresh Parmesan and a side salad of radicchio with reduced balsamic and olive oil.

The pasta will be comforting, the figs sweet, the radicchio slightly bitter and the salt will punch through to take it from nursery to adult. This is MA rated pasta.

A glass of pink wine won’t go astray either.

If I’ve got food like this inside me then I can cope with Kate Winslet doing most things.

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  1. Figging brilliant.

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