Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Homemade Fig Preserves
I've had the itch lately to make homemade jam. Last summer we made strawberry freezer jam and it was yum. Luckily we still have a couple in the freezer. So when I remembered some friends of ours have figs, I called them up and they said come and get all you want. The kids and I picked them last Friday, and Saturday I made fig preserves for the first time. I remember eating them and my Nanny making them...... along with all sorts of other things she canned. Those memories and smells just take me back to my childhood.So, After searching online and in cookbooks, I consulted my nanny (a few times during my jam making) to make sure I was making it right. I think the finished product turned out pretty good! I even remembered to write down the recipe I used, which is basically my Nanny's just adapted a bit by me.
Wash your figs well and then cut off the stems. I started out with a little bit shy of a gallon of figs.
Mash figs with a potato masher or whatever you have to mash with. My mashed figs equaled about 4 cups.
Transfer mashed figs to large pot or dutch oven on medium to medium high heat. Add 1 1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice, 5 to 6 cups of sugar(depending on how sweet you like it), and 1 1/2 c. to 2 c. water. Stir well. Bring mixture to a boil. Continue to boil. Stir frequently so mixture will not scorch. Cook for about 1 hr. to 1 hr. 15 mins. until the figs are translucent and mixture has thickened , but you don't won't thick gobs. It still needs to be runny to considerably thicker. I, like my nanny, spoon some out on a plate to taste and see the consistency. Fill sterilized jars,(while jam is cooking, I turn on the oven to around 170 degrees, set my jars on the cookie sheet and put them in the oven to sterilize until the jam is finished cooking. Then I take them out of the oven two at a time to fill. I put on the lids which have been on a low boil) using wide mouth funnel. Seal jars. Let cool. Also, write the date it was made and what it is on top of the lid. This recipe made 10, 1/2 pint jars.
We've already tried some on homemade waffles and it was very good if I do say so. Can't wait to try them on a biscuit. Homemade jams and jellies always make great gifts, too.