Indulge in a Mediterranean treat with homemade fig jam.
I love fresh figs. Good ones. Nice ripe, juicy, figs. Soft to the bite, but rich in flavor. Similar to a date, but less heavy.
Figs are native to the Mediterranean region, and even grow in several places here in the U.S. But not in the Mid-Columbia. Our winters are too cold for a poor fig tree to survive. So I have to limit my fresh fig tastings to rare trips to the Portland, Oregon farmer’s market where I indulge with abandonment.
Except sometimes fresh figs show up in the local grocery store. They are usually wrapped in plastic and over-ripe by the time they get here, but I buy them nonetheless.
Recently I snagged a few containers of both black Mission figs and green Calimyrna figs. A few were perfect for eating out of hand, but most were past their prime. No problem. I reached for one of my favorite canning books, The Joy of Jams, Jellies, and Other Sweet Preserves by Linda Zeidrich, adapted her recipe, and turned my too-soft figs into a fantastic chunky jam with just a hint of anise.
- 2 lbs chopped fresh figs
- ½ cup water
- 3 cups sugar
- ½ tsp anise seed
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- Combine all ingredients in a large pot. Don't forget to rub the inner lip of the pot with butter to prevent boiling over.
- Stir over medium heat until the sugar dissolves.
- Bring to a boil.
- Boil gently, stirring often, for 10-15 minutes or until thickened.
- Ladle into clean canning jars. Add lids and rings.
- Process in a water bath canner for 10 minutes.
Not sure about the water bath process? See our tutorial here.
You may be wondering, “what do I do with fig jam?” If you can refrain from eating it all out of the jar with a spoon (yes, it’s that good) here are some other ideas:
- Make homemade fig-filled cookies
- Use as a cake filling
- Serve over cheeses
- Or serve over ice cream
- Use it as a ripple in homemade ice cream
- Mix it with plain yogurt for a snack
- Add some to your morning smoothie
- Give as a well appreciated gift
What do you do with your homemade fig jam?