Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Momento Mori

When he was by, the birds such pleasure took,
That some would sing, some other in their bills
Would bring him mulberries and ripe-red cherries
--Shakespeare's Venus and Adonis, ll. 1101-3

Today will be spent concocting a very limited edition of preserves, fittingly called 'Momento Mori'. Literally translated, this phrase means, 'Remember you will die' & also references a type of art common in Medieval times. It served as a remembrance for a loved one who had passed onto the next life. The cherries I will be using today came from a beautiful old tree at 1912 SE 35th Avenue here in Portland. I feel sad thinking that someone chose to cut this tree down as it was laden with fruit. As a memento a small batch of preserves, which will include black pepper, will be made. This way the Summer fruit can also be remembered in Autumn as this flavor lends itself so well with roast chicken, duck, or turkey. The pits from these cherries will also not go to waste~they will be steeped in vodka to make an especially beautiful beverage when the weather changes. I am so pleased the birds didn't get all of this fruit, tho' I do not begrudge them a few nibbles, here & there.

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