|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Servings: 5 to 6 pints (36 servings)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 0g||0%|
|Saturated Fat 0g||0%|
|Total Carbohydrate 91g||33%|
|Dietary Fiber 2g||8%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
Figs have two short harvest seasons every year, once in early summer and once in the fall. If you're lucky enough to have a fig tree or find a good deal at the grocer, then you may end up with more figs than you know what to do with. One great way to use up figs and enjoy them while they're not in season is to turn them into preserves.
This old-fashioned recipe for fig preserves includes just three ingredients: figs, sugar, and lemon. Figs have a natural, honey-like sweetness, so lemon adds a nice bit of acidity and brightness. The ripe fruit is cooked down slowly with an equal amount of sugar and some lemon slices, resulting in a delicious spread perfect on a biscuit or served with a cheese platter.
You do need to plan ahead since the sugar-coated figs sit overnight before cooking. If you don't want to can your preserves, skip sterilizing the jars and place in the fridge instead of processing, using within three weeks. If you want to freeze some preserves, leave at least an inch of space at the top of the jar. This recipe makes a large quantity, so you can halve it or just make a third (using two pounds of figs).
- 6 pounds fresh figs (peeled or unpeeled)
- 6 pounds granulated sugar
- 3 lemons (very thinly sliced, seeds removed)
Gather the ingredients.
Wash, drain, and stem the figs.
Put the figs in large stainless steel or enamel-lined stockpot or Dutch oven. Pour the sugar over the figs and let sit overnight.
Place the pot over medium heat and cook the fig and sugar mixture until the sugar is completely dissolved, stirring constantly.
Reduce the heat to low and add the lemon slices. Cover and cook, occasionally stirring to prevent sticking, until the figs are transparent and the syrup is thick, or about 2 to 3 hours. If possible, use a candy or deep-fry thermometer—look for a jelling point of 220 F to 225 F.
Meanwhile, prepare the jars and boiling water bath for canning. Sterilize the jars and lids and fill a large canning kettle with water and bring to a boil.
Pour the hot preserves into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Wipe the rims and place the lids and rings on the jars.
Place the jars on the rack in the boiling water canner. If needed, add more hot water to bring it to a depth of 1 inch above the tops of the jars. Bring the water back to a gentle boil and continue boiling for 10 minutes (or 15 minutes if your altitude is above 6000 feet).
Using jar lifters or heat-proof rubber-tipped tongs, remove the processed jars to a rack and let them cool. Check to make sure they are sealed and then store in a cool, dark place.
- If any jar does not seal, refrigerate and use right away or freeze the jam in a freezer container. If you use a glass jar to freeze the jam, then leave at least 1 inch of headspace.