Candied Figs

So sweet and chewy

So sweet and chewy

We know figs are expensive and some of you will balk at the proportions below. But those of you with a tree in your yard or who may be lucky enough to know someone with a fig tree in their yard (like we do) should appreciate this recipe. When fig trees start producing, just like any fruit tree we suppose, staying on top of the harvest can be quite a challenge. This makes use of firm, but ripe or even slightly under ripe fruit. Picking figs when the heat index is still up in the 90s as sunset approaches is akin to torture (especially if you forget your gloves to protect from the sticky juice, but trust us they only help so much.) But figs are wonderful, tasty little things and are well worth the effort. Candying these little jewels is time-consuming but well worth the effort too.

Candied Figs

  • 2 1/2 pounds fresh figs, washed
  • 4 cups sugar, plus sugar for dusting
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 lemon sliced thin and seeded
  • 1/2 inch knob of ginger peeled

Day One: In a large stock pot over medium heat, bring sugar, lemon, water and ginger to a boil stirring often. Add figs and return to a boil. Let boil for five minutes. Turn off heat and cover. Let set for 24 hours.

Days Two to Five: Uncover figs after each 24-hour interval. Bring to a boil. Turn off heat. Cover and let set.

Day 6: Drain figs. We saved the syrup for cocktails, big surprise. Whether you’re supposed to do this or not is anyone’s guess. Place figs on one or two bakers rack, along with lemon slices. Discard ginger. Place bakers racks over cookie sheets. The figs will drip. Turn oven onto lowest setting. Once the oven reaches temperature, turn it off. Once the oven is off, place the figs inside the oven, close the door and leave it alone for 24 hours.

Day 7 to 12ish: Remove figs from oven after each 24-hour period. Turn oven on to lowest setting. Once it hits temperature turn it off and stick the figs in. The figs will get drier each day. Test them periodically for tackiness. They should be like a dried fig or date you buy at the market. This process took five days for us, but can take up to seven. Once the figs are done, roll them in sugar and place in a cool, dry place. We refrigerate ours because of the humidity where we live even with the AC on.


About Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide

This blog attempts to collect some of the things I try to create with food and booze. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I fail. My hope is to entertain and maybe help people think a little harder about what they decide to eat and drink.
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6 Responses to Candied Figs

  1. sallybr says:

    This post is definitely bittersweet for us…. we left behind two fig trees in Oklahoma that were starting to bear fruit when we left. I can only hope that the new owners appreciate what they have… (sigh)

    I think the winter here in Kansas is just a little harsher and fig trees would not survive

  2. Gerlinde says:

    Thank you for posting this . I have been looking for a recipe like this for ages. My girlfriend’s tree has green figs, can you use them for this recipe ? For Christmas in France you can buy candied chestnuts, are these figs similar?

  3. A_Boleyn says:

    Glorious, chewy, candied figs.

  4. ChgoJohn says:

    This may be a bit too complicated for me but do they ever look and sound good, Greg.

  5. Raymund says:

    Now I know what to do when I get handed over some figs.

  6. Gerlinde says:

    I got green figs ( I think they are called mission figs ) from my girlfriends tree and I am on the second day. I have a question, do you bring them to a rolling boil ?

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