My neighbour is a genius.
She and I exchange comments on Facebook from time to time. (Pause to consider the oddness of that, since our front porches almost face each other ... but we talk on Facebook. Go ahead ... mutter something along the lines of "what is this world coming to." There. Done? OK. At least we talk. Do you talk to your neighbour? Mmmhmmm.)
She redid her entire front lawn into an edible garden last year. I, on the other hand, put some real effort into tackling the weeds in my front lawn this year, and accidentally killed it. The whole thing. Also, I hired three different people to cut it, and they all got better jobs and abandoned me.
So this year ... yup, I'm "that" neighbour. With the horrible front lawn. It's embarrassing.
A month or two ago, she posted a question about beets. I passed along the recipe that had been passed along to me. It involved mint leaves. Which, coincidentally, is the only thing growing in abundance in my back yard this year. I happily told her to help herself, but please don't judge my sad, non-productive tomato plants. She generously brought me some tomatoes. Spike, in return, offered her some of my pickled beets.
He didn't realize we were out of pickled beets.
So he enthusiastically gave her a jar of plum preserves, which frightened me slightly. It was my first year making plum preserves. And I had discovered that unlike tomato butter, which never thickens as much as you think it will, plum preserves do. And they continue thickening after you've taken them off the stove. So my plum preserves are a fairly solid creation. Tasty, yes. But solid.
Do you know what my genius of a neighbour did?
Took a round of Brie. Sliced it in half. Spread plum preserves on the bottom half. Topped it with the top half. Baked until gooey. And served with a baguette.