A Ha!

I have figured it out.

You may recall my mentioning the blueberries I ate on the honeymoon–tiny, juicy, glossy-black and intensely flavored, they reminded me of raisins more than anything else. In spite of this, I knew they were blueberries. Not only did they look like blueberries (albeit tiny ones), but the sign next to them at the market was very clear: “myrtilles.” According to my high school French class, Chocolate and Zucchini, and any number of random Google searches, Myrtilles=blueberries.

Yesterday morning, while eating breakfast, I perused a reissued 1981 history/cookery book on fruit, each chapter dedicated to a different delectable item. The recipes and chapter headings, though titled in English, are footnoted with French translations (something which might seem odd in a British cookbook, until one calculates the actual mileage between the two borders, and, you know, the dynastic history). There, footnoting the chapter on bilberries (NOT blueberries), was the French translation: “myrtilles.” The main descriptive paragraph then goes on to exactly deliniate the berries that Teacherman and I ate in France, in all their diminuative, shiny, full-flavored glory.

Not blueberries, BILBERRIES!  I ate a new an exciting fruit and I didn’t even know it!  Ah well; they were exciting and delectable even without the knowledge that I was having a unique introductory experience, and I recall the flavor perfectly.  (I really should have known that something was up: we didn’t see blueberries anywhere in else in all of our time in Europe).  Myrtilles can obviously refer to both blueberries and bilberries, but these were definitely the latter.

This morning, though, we ate blueberries.  Actual, real, undeniable blueberries, that were large, dusty-blue, and labeled “blueberries” in English at the farmer’s market.  I dug a frozen cupfull out of one of my enormous freezer bags and blended them up with a 12-oz container of Greek yogurt, a pinch of lavender, a squeeze of lemon and a bare smidge of sweetener.  Into serving glasses it went, and Teacherman and I savored the concoction, not because it was reminiscent of our unexpected bilberries, but because it was lovely in its own right.

Published in: on August 17, 2007 at 7:44 am  Leave a Comment  

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