Thursday, July 21, 2016

Experimenting with Fig Preserves

The figs are ripening each day. We have to get them before the birds do!
I picked a few on Tuesday and made some preserves. Yesterday Adam got a ladder and picked another bowlful.
Fig preserves are the easiest preserves to make, I think. You need no pectin. Whether you have a pound of figs or you have great piles of them, you can make preserves. For each pound of figs you need 3/4 cup of sugar (roughly) and a lot of thinly sliced lemon (with the rind), about one lemon per pound of figs. That's it! Stir it well, let it sit for about 1/2 hour, and then start cooking it slowly until it boils.

On Tuesday I had some lovely preserves going until I was waylaid by Facebook! Shame on me. I smelled an awful smell, ran to the kitchen, and sure enough -- my fig preserves had burnt on the bottom. Not one to waste anything, especially something I'd worked for, I gently removed and lifted the good preserves from the burnt stuff on the bottom, and canned the good stuff. I made about a pint.
Yesterday I fared better. The only secret is to cut each fig in quarters so the preserves aren't too chunky, and to cook it a long time -- maybe an hour, stirring often -- until the fruit becomes translucent and the sugars thicken into a syrup. This ensures good texture and good taste. 
Yesterday I got two wide-mouth pint jars from my canning, plus extra in the frig. Today I'll do more. It's not a hard job, and for preserves I do not use a hot water bath. Because the sugars are so very hot, all you need to do is turn the jars upside down after you've filled and sealed them. Leave them upended for about 20 minutes, then turn them right-side-up again. They should pop/seal quickly. I'll be eating these preserves up so fast, I'm not sure it would matter!
We have two other fig bushes across the yard, and they give a totally different fig - I'm so tickled! I'm not sure about the big fig tree -- it's probably a Brown Turkey or a Papa John -- but the other two bushes might Italian Blacks. I'll be preserving them today.
Do you have figs in your yard? Do you make preserves? Do tell!


  1. Oh! I am trying so hard not to be covetous! What a beautiful and delicious treasure you have there! Your property is just coming along and providing glorious surprises!

    1. Thank you, Sarah! I am having fun this summer :)

  2. No figs here but surely enjoyed seeing your bountiful supply!

  3. None here either, except for dried ones from the grocery. :-)

    I think fig preserves would be delicious and to think they are from your own trees.

    I am amazed that you have all of this going on for you. You used to live in town, now you live on a farm and are growing some of what you eat. Totally impressive.

    Enjoy each new day ~ Love, hugs & prayers ~ FlowerLady

  4. I make jams the same way, just turn them upside down and make sure I hear the little satisfying pop! I've never made fig preserves; sounds delicious. I've never made orange marmalade either, and it's my favorite jam of all time. Must remedy that, although that season is in cooler weather, thankfully.

  5. The only figs I like are Fig Newton cookies. : )


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