Click here for my Orange Fig Crème Brulee recipe using yogurt instead of heavy cream!
You will absolutely love this Dish Behind the Dish – Orange Fig Crème Brulee made with yogurt instead of heavy cream! It’s easy, healthy, decadent, and sinfully DELISH! The love story isn’t bad either! Read on for the story…
In order for you to “Come Taste the Memories,” for this fabulous dessert, I must go all the way back to May 17, 2013. In all actuality, it started about 3 weeks before that. But for the sake of sparing you a novel (well, it might still be a novel), I’ll tell you the good parts!
First off, I admit it. I fell victim to online dating AGAIN last year. It wasn’t my first time. I had tried my hand at Match.com back in 2005 after my divorce. In my small community where our schools are number one in the state and families move here because of it, you can imagine how difficult it is to find single people in Oldham County. Don’t get me wrong, I had a ton of friends and was well-respected professionally, but all my friends were married, and I would never date someone I crossed paths with at work! Luckily, I was taught early on to never mix the two. Needless to say, while Match.com was a great way to meet other singles outside my community, it proved to NOT be the best way to meet singles for me. It only took me 2 years to figure out dating had drastically changed since I was single at 25! Talk about a crash course in what and what-not to do! Unfortunately, it took a long, 4-year Match relationship for me to get the message. And I got it, loud and clear!
After being single for 3 years after that relationship, and swearing off men for good, a close friend of mine suggested I try online dating again. But this time, EHarmony.com. She and her husband had met on EHarmony and she assured me that I would be more interested in their psychological matching than the more search-a-profile-for-a-cutie-based matching. I was skeptical, but decided to give it a try for only 3 months in hopes of attracting a different type of guy. 3 months was the minimum time I could sign up, so I thought I’d give it a try with a new attitude! I made the conscious decision to be myself when answering the profile questions, no matter how long, how deep, how intellectual, how shallow, or how seemingly off-the-cuff I would be. As you can tell by now, I have never been called shy or reserved, and I was tired of compromising and dumbing myself down! Certainly, introvert has never been uttered in my presence, so I chose to ramble if I wanted to ramble! I decided I wouldn’t worry about talking too much, talking too intelligently, or talking too deep! I was going to be myself and see if there was a guy out there who could appreciate it!
After 2 months on EHarmony, numerous shallow conversations that left me wanting more, and a couple lousy dates, I got a message from a guy named, Greg. Greg lived in Frankfort, well outside my dating distance parameters. But there was something about Greg I couldn’t put my finger on. I’m not sure what it was, but there was something that drew me to answer all his questions and laugh out loud at his comments. But he did all the no-nos, sort of.
He didn’t fill out his profile at all and he only had 2 pictures posted (one of which was too blurry to see anything, the other was a side view of his face)! But there was still something that kept me interested enough in his responses to flag him in my computer so I would know when they came in. For all I knew he could have been 5’0″ to my 5’10”. He could have been missing his teeth, for God’s sake! Don’t laugh, it happened on Match!
Our very in-depth, honest conversations continued by email for the next 3 weeks! We didn’t even talk on the phone. We didn’t do live chat. We just emailed and shared thoughts til the wee hours of the night. As long-winded as we wanted. As raw and heartfelt as we wanted. As elementary and silly as we wanted. At the end of those 3 weeks and hours of conversations, I knew I loved him. I loved him for his thoughts, his intelligence, and above all, his heart. I loved him as a man, a father, a businessman, and a friend.
After 3 weeks, we decided to meet in person on a whim. We met at a no-pressure Rafferty’s for lunch. In my mind, if it were even possible to not end well, I had 2 events to go to that afternoon and evening so I had an out! In his mind, if it didn’t end well for him, we would be awesome friends! Both silently hoping for a physical attraction to back up the intellectual attraction we had already established in a million emailed novels, he drove from Frankfort and I drove from Crestwood to Rafferty’s. I was a nervous wreck! What if he chewed with his mouth open? What if he was short? What if he was a Catfish and was really 16, or a girl? And, good Lord, what if he was toothless?
When I parked the car at Rafferty’s, he was already there. Standing outside in all his glorious 6’4″-ness! Tall, check. Dressed nice, check. Nice shoes, check. A mouthful of teeth, CHECK! We hugged tightly like old friends who hadn’t seen each other forever. Smells good, check. What a pleasant surprise!
We walked into Rafferty’s and held hands through most of lunch, except when we actually had to use our hands to eat! At the end of our lunch, neither of us wanted to leave the other, so together, we went to my first event of the two, Yew Dell Botanical Gardens’ Sculpture Show reception. It was at the reception, walking through the gardens, that we both realized what we had was worth continuing in person, and as often as possible.
My second event of the day started at 6pm that evening and was a private ticketed dinner. Greg suggested we meet downtown after the dinner and we would continue our first date. I left the gardens and drove to the military recognition dinner at the Galt House in downtown Louisville. Needless to say, it was the longest dinner of my life! All that ran through my mind during the dinner was getting back together with Greg to see what else we had in common!
After the dinner, Greg was downstairs at the front door of the hotel in his car to pick me up for a stroll through Waterfront Park. We drove down to the Ohio River at 9:30pm. I changed out of my dinner dress in the car while he waited outside for me to appear in something different from the dress he had seen me in all day. I stepped out in jeans and a casual long sleeve top. We walked from one end of the park to the other end, and back again, holding hands the entire time like we had known each other forever. We were together until 4am in the park, just walking, talking, and laughing until our faces hurt! He took me back to my car at the Galt House parking garage before he drove back to Frankfort to sleep for a couple of hours before his son’s graduation, and I drove back home to Crestwood, with a Cheshire cat grin from ear to ear. I knew I had found something different this time.
We met again the next day for our second date that lasted another 15 or 16 hours, then the next day for another all-day date. All in all over the last year, we’ve been inseparable, except for a couple of weeks when life interrupted. It has been an awesome year of spending time with someone who is so much like me, it’s scary! There are some differences, but good ones. Just enough to make us respect the other and compliment each other’s differences. Two of the things that we absolutely love to do together are fishing and anything having to do with food! He is a huge foodie, too! He is a master griller and has a way of knowing what ingredients work well together. You really never know what he’ll come up with in the kitchen, but it’s always good!
For our year anniversary, he took me to a new restaurant called, Brasserie Provence in Louisville. Brasserie Provence is a true hidden gem that dishes up authentic French food, and surprisingly, it’s located in a shopping center! You would never know how awesome this restaurant is by looking at it from the road. But when you walk in the front door, you feel like you’ve stepped off a tour bus in France! The décor was so charming and transported you immediately to cobble-stoned streets and vine-covered iron gates in the backyard of a French grandmother! After getting help from the waiter to read the menu written in French, it was here that we tasted 3 new dishes together, Licorice Escargot, Honey Lavender Pork Chops, and Fig Crème Brulee.
The crème brulee was to die for!! Even though I had ordered my own dessert, Greg had ordered the crème brulee for himself (after I convinced him that he wanted dessert). After he broke through the sugar crust on top, he dug down to the bottom of the dish and discovered a layer of figs lining the bottom of the ramekin. I am a sucker for food with a surprise inside, so when he spooned out a taste for me, topped with a bite of fig, I just about needed a moment alone! It was sinfully delicious and decadent!
So, to commemorate our 1-year anniversary French dinner at Brasserie Provence, and our year together making memories with food, I came up with this recipe for Orange Fig Crème Brulee. As usual though, I use my foodie memories to make my own recipes that I can pass down to my niece, Ashleigh! I absolutely love orange and cinnamon, especially with figs! I decided to come up with a recipe for crème brulee with yogurt since I didn’t have heavy cream in the fridge. This is a healthier version of crème brulee that doesn’t even require cooking cream ahead of time, but still gives you that creaminess and texture we all love!
My hope for you is that you find someone who ignites your passion and creativity! Someone, like Greg, who urges you to make time for those things you’re passionate about, whether it be cooking or a hobby like stained glass. Someone who eats your desserts when he’d rather have something salty. Someone who knows what makes you happy and tries to make sure you are. My hope for you is that you find someone like Greg who is loving, thoughtful, supportive, patient, and quite simply DELISH!