Many years ago I lived in a small cottage overlooking Puget Sound in West Seattle. Outside my backdoor was a green fig tree which literally dripped with sweet syrup when the figs were ripe. The harvest of these jewels yielded many jars of fig butter with walnuts, dried figs, preserved figs for gifts, and a splendid salad with feta cheese, prosciutto and baby greens. Serve this condiment with sausages, pate’, chicken, curries, or other Middle Eastern dishes. Pickled figs wrapped in prosciutto with arugula also makes a tasty hors d’oeuvre.
Figs have a fair amount of potassium, magnesium and calcium plus fiber. Be sure to buy organic dried figs, especially if you’re sensitive to sulfur dioxide.
1 lb dried figs*
1-1/4 cup red wine vinegar
3 Tbsp sugar
8 whole cloves
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Cook vinegar, sugar, cloves and cinnamon in sauce pan over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Add figs and simmer for 10 minutes. Pack figs in sterile jars, pour hot syrup up to 1/2 inch from tops of jars. Seal and process in water bath for 10 minutes. Cool.
* May substitute dried apricots, prunes or pears