I absolutely love everything about summer. It’s that feeling in the air. . . sundresses, swimming, long days, and of course, the fresh fruit. As many of you may know, I’ve been having a bit of a love affair with my fig tree and am quite pleased with its success.
Now, speaking candidly, I am claiming it as my tree though I did not plant it. That said, it looked very haggard and unloved until I moved in and I decided to change that. Every morning for the past couple of months, I have enjoyed a real ritual. The first thing I do after opening the studio is go and check on my figs. Over the course of the past few weeks, I have enjoyed the wonderful satisfaction of watching this tree flourish, finally producing lush, gorgeous figs. It is a great pleasure to pick fruit off a tree, especially one that you have cared for. For me, the novelty never wears off.
I feel quite proud, (as silly as that may sound). The only dilemma that has occurred is that the tree seems as enthusiastic about my efforts as I am and has produced a plethora of figs which have all ripened at once. I’ve netted the trees to keep the birds and the fruit bats away, but clever as they are, I’m sure they will outsmart me soon enough.
So, with about 3 KGS of figs ready to be enjoyed, I thought it to be the perfect time to attempt my first batch of fig jam. I was a little intimidated at first, but I must say, it was surprisingly easy. With a few adjustments between batches, this is something any home cook can try. So far I’ve enjoyed my fig jam on pizza, with cheese, and a slice.
Today, I thought I might share the recipe for all of you to enjoy!
1 lb (abt 455 grams) ripe Figs
1/4 cup Lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1 tsp Lemon zest, or from 1 med-large lemon
1/2 tsp ground Ginger
1 Cinnamon stick
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup Sugar
Wash the figs well, trim the stems and add all of the ingredients into a heavy pan. Then place the stove on a medium heat until the sugar dissolves and stir. Increase the heat until it comes to the boil and continue to stir as the mixture starts to thicken. When the jam is close to setting, remove the cinnamon stick. Check for doneness (I usually dip a chilled spoon into the boiling jam mixture). In the beginning, you will notice that the syrup simply runs of the side of the spoon, but as the time passes it will start becoming heavier and would fall slowly as drops. You know its done when two drops form together and “sheets” off together from the spoon.
Fig Jam Slice.
1 cup all-purpose flour (i used coconut flour)
½ cup chopped pecans
1 cup rolled oats (not instant)
½ cup shredded coconut
½ cup packed light brown sugar
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
1 stick butter, softened, cut into 10 pieces. (i used 50% coconut oil, 50% butter-lactose free)
3 tablespoons honey
2 cups fig jam ( enough to spread over the bars. Really your choice. )
Preheat the oven to 350 and line a 8×8 pan with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on the sides and set aside. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, pecans, oats, sugar, shredded coconut, cinnamon and salt. Then, cut in the butter and work mixture into small crumbs. You can also do this with a fork or even your fingers. Add honey, and using your hands, continue to work the mixture until thoroughly combined. Transfer two-thirds of the mixture to prepared pan and press it down, covering the entire bottom of the pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the crust is light brown. Then, remove from oven and spread the fig jam across the top. Sprinkle the reserved granola mixture evenly over the jam. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool completely in the pan and remove and cut into bars.
I’m getting incredibly hungry as I write this. I may have to go and try something else out with those figs…