Figs- in Ottawa the window for fresh figs is small. I was looking for a fig preserve perfect to add to a charcuterie board. I think this is it: sweet, sour, and delicious.
To make approximately 3 x 500 ml jars
3 quarts ripe Black Mission figs (about 20 figs)
enough boiling water to cover the figs in a large bowl or pot
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup Madeira wine
1/2 cup white vinegar (5% acidity)
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar (5% acidity)
6 cups sugar
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
a couple teaspoons of whole cloves, tied up in cheesecloth or placed in a stainless-steel tea ball
Wash the figs, leaving a bit of the stem in place, and place them in a large heatproof bowl or pot. Cover the figs with boiling water and let stand for 10 minutes. In a large, nonreactive pot, combine all the ingredients for the brine. Heat the brine slowly, stirring gently until the sugar is dissolved. Drain the figs and add them to the pot with the brine.
Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover the pot, and place it on a cool burner where you can let it stand for 10-12 hours. Then repeat this step: Simmer the figs for 10 minutes and let stand another 10-12 hours. Finally, simmer the figs for 10 final minutes, so they’re hot and ready to can.
Remove the spices, then pack the hot figs into clean, hot Mason jars and cover them with brine, leaving 1/2-inch head space. (Remove air bubbles with a small silicone spatula or chopstick, then adjust the level of brine if necessary.) Wipe the jar rims with a clean, damp towel, and add the lids.
Process 15 minutes in a boiling water canner. If you don’t want to can them, store them in the fridge and use them up within a month or so.
**If you prefer not to add alcohol, just replace with more water.