Getting figgy with it

I was blessed this summer to get my hands on both green and black fresh locally grown figs…Yipee!  Of course I was eager to make some of my wildly popular Orange & Fig Jam.

Oranges and Figs

Locally grown Riverside oranges and fresh green figs!

The fig season is relatively short but if you are lucky enough to have access to these beauties I urge you to make this lovely Orange & Fig Jam.  I have used both black mission figs and green figs to make this jam and have had beautiful results with each.  Just an FYI – black figs will make a bit darker jam and are usually a bit sweeter than the green.  And don’t worry figs are easy to freeze until you are ready to use them. Well then…let’s get figgy with it!

Orange & Fig Jam (yield 6 half pint jars)

4 cups chopped fresh figs
4 large oranges (peeled and divided)
1/2 cup water
6 TBSP lemon juice
1/2 cup orange juice (optional)
grated orange zest
4-5 cups granulated sugar

First, pulse the oranges in your food processor for a minute or two so that they are finely chopped.  Then combine the oranges and figs with 1/2 cup water, lemon juice and orange zest in a large dutch oven or wide pot.  Cover and simmer fruit for 20 minutes.  Uncover and mash fruit further if necessary to eliminate any large chunks.  Add sugar. Increase heat to medium-high and bring mixture to a boil. Continue to boil and stir until gel stage is reached.

Important! Taste your jam before it has reached the gel stage! If it needs a bit more sugar, go ahead and add that additional 1/2 cup or a whole cup (as needed).  As I mentioned before, black figs tend to be a bit sweeter than green figs so let YOUR taste buds decide. Also if you want your jam to be a bit more “orange-y” or if it tastes to “figgy” then feel free to add that lil bit of extra OJ.

orangefig

You can’t get any fresh figs?  Bummer!  But don’t worry I have also used dried black mission figs to make this jam. Your jam will be much darker but still taste fantastic! Here are some pointers for substituting dried figs-

  1. Take 6 dried figs and simmer them in 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup orange juice for about 30 minutes to rehydrate them.  Let them soak up the liquid. After the figs have cooled, finely chop them. A mini food processor works well too for this! You should have 1 cup of fig goop.
  2. Use 6 oranges instead of 4 and definitely add the 1/2 cup of orange juice mentioned in the recipe above.
  3. Go easy on the sugar.  Don’t use more than 4 cups. Really. Dried figs have a much more intense flavor and are way sweeter than fresh figs.
  4. If your jam is too sweet or too, um, figgy then add another chopped orange and/or more OJ to balance out the flavor.

    Orange & Fig Jam

    Serve Orange & Fig Jam with goat cheese for an easy party appetizer.

Have fun!  You can then pair your Orange & Fig Jam with goat cheese for an easy and fab-u-lous party appetizer.

Orange Fig3

A blue ribbon winner at the 2015 California State Fair!

 

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