Flannel Jammies Farm

...praising God on our 1/5 acre of suburbia

Monday, August 19, 2013

'just right' fig jam...

Fresh-picked figs... so lovely and so lucious!  They are fragile and must be handled with care, but when you cut into one, it's a riot of color and texture...

A sweet friend has a fig tree in her yard that is reminiscent of some of the furnishings in The Three Bears' house: 'just right'!  After seeing hers, we are considering one for our little piece of suburbia.  My friend had figs.  I had Juliet tomatoes.  A deal was struck!  We'd make a trade.

After a nice visit between friends exchanging fruits and conversation, we drove home with visions of figgy pudding in our heads of fig jam in our pantry.  A gently rinse of the figs and we were ready to can.  But which recipe?

I'd done some research in my treasured canning books and on the canning websites I valued most for their commitment to safe and flavorful canning.  There were lots of fig jam recipes out there, but none was 'just right'.  At last a low-sugar, high-flavor, 'just right' recipe was born from bits and pieces of favorites found elsewhere.  I checked my new recipe's ratios against safety guidelines to be sure... and then dove in.

Any tough stem pieces were removed from the perfectly ripe figs, and each was cut into quarters before being added to a large French pan.  (French pans make everything taste better, I think!)  Flavor friends like grated orange zest, organic sugar, raw local honey, and a muslin sachet of spices were added to the figs and lemon juice provided the needed acidity.  I used no/low sugar pectin for this recipe; I'd reduced the sugars called for in many recipes I'd found knowing that the sweetness of the figs would be 'just right'.

Figs simmered nicely and then were brought to a boil before removing the spice bag and adding the pectin.  Once ready, the figs were funneled into small jars and processed in a waterbath canner.  The jars emerged shimmering with jewel-toned goodness.  A 'just right' amount was left for us to gobble up on toast!

Find some figs.  
Make some jam.  
Share some goodness and grace with those around you.  
Make each day 'just right'!

(Here's a couple of good places to start with if you want to make fig jam or begin being creative with your canning endeavors)
   Pick Your Own's How to Make Fig Preserves
   Food in Jars: Canning 101: How to Can Creatively and Still Be Safe

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