The summer fruits are quickly disappearing from the markets and the fall fruits are just starting to come in full force. But there’s one fruit that sort of straddles the line between summer and fall, and that’s the fig. The brown, the green and the purplish blue black fruits seem to show up one week and disappear about two weeks later. Talk about blink and you’ll miss it. This fresh fig recipe is the love child of bacon jam and fig jam. Mind blown yet? Just wait until you taste it.
I’ve made plenty of fresh fig recipes here. There’s the fig conserves made with green Kadota figs, a fig sauce to top boring chicken breast, honey orange roasted figs, fig and port mustard, and grilled bacon wrapped figs. So you can see that there’s quite a few fresh fig recipes on the site. Considering I only had my first fresh fig 3 years ago, I think that’s pretty good. My grilled bacon wrapped figs were my inspiration for this fig jam recipe. You could call this bacon jam, but it’s really not. There’s just enough bacon in this fig jam to give it a savory/smoky kick. It’s similar to the filling recipe I used in my homemade pop tarts.
I was really looking to make something that used some of my favorite flavors, but would also allow me to be able to eat them after their season ended. And I was desperate to find something to take to a wine and cheese party that I was attending and I didn’t want to bring the usual couple slabs of cheese or standard brie recipe. I wanted something different. I wasn’t sure if the party was white or red wine focused, so I needed to have something that could pair well with either, and this fig jam does the trick.
Even though I’m calling this a savory fig jam, it’s still pretty sweet. It would be a terrific spread for you morning toast, a dollop on your waffles would pretty much make your plate complete or spreading a thick layer of it onto a grilled cheese sandwich, before you grill it, could quite possibly put you into an irretrievable food coma.
I made this batch up while Craig happened to be standing nearby. (Once he smells cooking bacon, he’s pretty much like our dog…glued to my leg until he gets some…bacon or me. 😉 ) When he saw me grab the bottle of bourbon he was sure he’d caught me getting ready to take a slug of it straight from the bottle (guys can be so dumb). Of course I was throwing some into the fig jam (if bacon makes things better, bourbon makes them AWESOME).
Fresh fig recipes are typically fairly easy to do, especially when it involves cooking them. So if you’re only familiar with dried figs, or those fig cookies, take this recipe for a spin. I’m sure it will be as popular at your house as it has been at mine. If you’re a canner, you could easily can up a bunch of these jars and give them as your Christmas gifts this year. You’ll definitely be very popular.
Maybe this is proof that men really are dogs.
Recipe: Savory Fig Jam
Summary: Makes 1 1/2 Pints
- 1 Pound Fresh Figs (stemmed and diced)
- 1/2 Cup Sugar
- 1/4 Cup Honey
- 2 Tablespoons Bourbon
- 1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon Frozen Orange Juice Concentrate
- 1/2 Teaspoon Lemon Zest
- Pinch Kosher Salt
- 1/3 Pound Thick Cut Bacon (cooked)
- In a large saucepan add the first 8 ingredients (everything except for the bacon).
- Give everything a stir to combine and let it rest for 30 minutes. During this time you should give it at least 2 more stirs. (This will help get all the flavors incorporated.)
- While the mixture is resting, you can chop the bacon. I left mine in bigger pieces (about 1/2″ square) but you can run it through a processor to get it into really small pieces if you want it to be more hidden in the jam.
- After 30 minutes, bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat. Once it boils, turn the heat down and bring it to a simmer.
- Add the bacon to the fig mixture. Continue stirring so that nothing sticks and burns.
- Continue cooking until the mixture has been reduced significantly and it has thickened up. This step took me about 25 minutes.
- While this is simmering, stir it from time to time to keep it from sticking and mash the pieces of fig.
- Once it’s been cooked down, remove the fig jam from the heat and let it cool.
- Once cooled, you can pour it into jars and refrigerate it.
- This should last up to 4 weeks in the refrigerator.
The type of bacon that you use will greatly affect the flavor of the jam. A peppered bacon will make it more savory, while an apple wood smoked bacon will make it taste sweeter. Use the bacon flavor that you like best.
Also, you can use any type of fresh figs you like for this recipe. I used Mission figs.
Preparation time: 20 minute(s)
Cooking time: 35 minute(s)
Diet tags: Gluten free
Number of servings (yield): 1
Culinary tradition: USA (General)
Recipe by Pamela Braun.
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