Once you start canning, you never go back. I wish someone would have told me that when I recently tried for the first time making and canning my thick raspberry jelly and apricot almond vanilla jam. Now I’m obsessed and I look at food in a different way!
I know this isn’t fig season but writing about Corsica for the Tuscan Gun and thinking about all the fond childhood memories of the fig tree in front of the house – I had this sudden craving for them. Figs are so abundant there that basement cabinets are filled with fig jam jars. So why not make a fig jam and can it?
The greatest thing about figs is that they are so versatile. Creating and mixing flavors with figs is so easy, it becomes almost a game to pair them with the craziest random food items (like apricots for example!). Beet salad with figs, baked Brie with figs, short ribs stew with figs, chocolate tart with fig sauce, fig bars, and my favorite… fig jam with blue cheese and bread!
When I was a child, I remember looking at figs like there came from another planet. Little seeds we can eat, sweet, not juicy, plump, a texture between a fruit and a nut – positively addictive!
So since they aren’t in season, I decided to combine two types of dried figs I bought at the store: Black Mission and Calimyrna figs. With lemon added in the jam, it makes for a wonderful sweet citrusy taste that you can pair with bread, cookies, cheeses, crêpes, meat.
Be adventurous and try to combine figs with your favorite food!
Lemony Two-Fig Jam
1.5 lb (700 g) or 24 oz of figs (12 oz of Black Mission and 12 oz of Calimyrna or 350 g of each)
2.5 cups (500 g) of sugar
1 vanilla bean – sliced open to remove the seeds
1 cup (240 ml) of lemon juice
1.5 cup (350 ml) of water
1 lemon to slice
Cut the figs in quarters. Mix them with the sugar and the vanilla seeds in a bowl. Throw in the vanilla pod for extra flavors – don’t discard it. Keep in the fridge for 12 hours.
In a deep pot, throw the fig mixture with the water and the lemon juice. Bring to a boiling point.
Cook at high heat for 5 minutes. Continue cooking at low heat for 5 minutes.
Remove from the heat and purée the jam in a mixer – or with a hand blender if you have one. Pulse until there are no more big pieces.
Bring the jam back inside the deep pot. Slice up 2 slices of lemon in 10 pieces each. Add all 20 pieces of lemon slides in the jam and mix well.
Depending on your stove and pot, your jam could be either more liquid or thicker than mine. At this point, mine was already very thick and the pieces of lemon with the juice helped making it a bit more liquid. Test it – if it’s too liquid, continue boiling. If it is getting too thick, add very hot water to the jam (1 spoonful at a time) until the desired consistency.