There’s no need to wait for fresh figs to make fig jam. Cravings wait for no one and jam made with dried figs is the kind of thing to make all year long. Add it to a cheese board. Bring it out with toast at breakfast. Make a batch to give as a food gift during the holidays. This is where it gets fun.
As fig lovers around the world know, these fruits taste great with such a variety of flavors! The fig jam recipe below is intended to provide a foundation upon which you can make it your own. We like to add enough brandy to make things interesting without tasting boozy. But, if you like oranges, you could swap in Triple Sec (and a few scrapes of orange zest). Port wine is also a natural pairing with dried mission figs.
If you’d prefer not to add alcohol to your batch of jam made with dried figs, no worries there. Water is great on its own, or make things interesting with brewed masala chai to introduce spice notes into the jam.
Speaking of spices, go wild! Add a dash of ground cardamom or cinnamon for warming fall and winter flavors. Or, stick one or two star anise into the jam while it cooks for an exotic note—just remember to fish it out before pulverizing the figs. For those who like heat, try adding in ground ginger, ginger paste, or even a dash of black pepper.
Quick jams don’t require sterilizing glass jars and lids. This jam made with dried figs also doesn’t require a thermometer. Because the figs are dried, you also don’t have to bother with cooking down the fruit until soft. Instead what you’re aiming for in this fig jam is to essentially make a simple syrup cooking with the fruit. When the sugar has dissolved and your wooden spoon scrapes the bottom of the saucepan without feeling any sugar crystals, you’re basically ready to move on to what makes this jam tick.
Mission Fig Jam Made with Dried Figs
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup brandy, Triple Sec, port wine, or brewed masala chai
- 8 ounces Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Dried Figs stemmed and halved
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- Combine water, brandy, figs, and lemon juice in a heavy-bottomed saucepan set over medium heat. Cook and stir for 7 minutes or until sugar has dissolved.
- Strain figs into a food processor, reserving syrup. Process figs with 1/2 cup syrup until smooth.
- Using a spatula, transfer figs back to the saucepan. Over medium low heat, stir in remaining syrup with a wooden spoon, cooking for 3 minutes or until integrated.
Recipe and photos by Annelies Zijderveld