The flavors of wild California, Provence, and refined China are in this dessert, so an orange-flower water or green Chartreuse custard sauce would also work well.
The figs taste even better if made the day before.
Put the figs and red wine in a nonreactive saucepan, and soak for 1 hour. Add the thyme, sugar, and honey, and simmer until the figs are tender, about 1 hour. Strain, reserving the figs, and boil down the cooking liquid until it is reduced to cup. Stem the figs and put them back in the reduced wine sauce and let them cool.
Put the tea leaves in a bowl and pour
To serve, whip the cream and fold it into the custard. Put the figs on plates. Pour the wine syrup over the figs, sprinkle the figs with the rose water, and then spoon some Lapsang Souchang custard cream on top of the figs.
Poach the dried figs in sweet wine like a Muscat, and serve with Roquefort cheese mashed with a quarter of its volume of double cream or fresh ricotta. Or use fresh figs, cover them in cardamom-flavored honey (
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