5 Ingredients or Fewer

Fig Jam with Cinnamon, Vanilla and Grappa

October  6, 2009
0 Ratings
  • Serves yields about 120 fluid ounces
Author Notes

Every year I make lots of jams from fruits from my garden. Fig jam, I have found, are not my grandchildren's choice (strawberry and peach are their favourite). So I decided to make an adult version of fig jam - I added vanilla bean, cinnamon stick and Grappa at the very end. I use this jam in fig tarts (under the figs) and also in the simple Italian Crostata. It also goes very well with a mature Pecorino cheese and Gorgonzola! I never exceed 4 1/2 pounds of fruit at a time because I find that the colour doesn't come out as nice. Just don't ask me why, but it's a fact with all my jams! —Maria Teresa Jorge

What You'll Need
  • 4 1/2 pounds Fresh green figs, peeled
  • 3 pounds sugar
  • 1 Vanilla bean, cut in half
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/4 cup Grappa
  • 2 lemons - juice freshly squeezed
  1. Peel the figs and cut them in quarters. Set aside.
  2. In a large pot add half the sugar, add the figs, add the rest of the sugar, cover with a lid and put in a cool place for 6 hours.
  3. Put the pan over medium heat and stir with a wooden spoon until the sugar is totally dissolved. Split the vanilla bean in half, remove the seeds into the sugar. Cut the vanilla bean in 6 pieces and add to the sugar. Add the cinnamon sticks and when the mixture reaches boiling point, lower the heat to the minimum and let simmer for 20 minutes, stiring from time to time so it doesn't stick to the bottom.
  4. Wash your jars and the lids thouroughly, sterilize them with boiling water, remove from the water and turn them upside down on a clean kitchen towel.
  5. Cover a table top with a few pieces of newspaper and add a heat protection to the table so you can put the pot on it.
  6. Squeeze the juice of two lemons.
  7. Add the Grappa to the jam, let simmer 5 minutes, add the lemon juice (for the pectin as figs don't have it), mix and remove from the heat. Put your pan on the table with the newspaper and start filling your jars. Clean the rim of the jar with a clean damp cloth and put the lid on immediately. Turn the jar upside down on the newspaper. Proceed with all the jam in the same way until you are finished. If the jam starts cooling, warm it up to boiling point again, jars should be filled with very hot jam.
  8. Leave the jars upside down for 1 hour, then turn them over, wash any jam that is sticking to the jars and keep in a cool dark place until needed.
  9. The step where I turn the pots upside down is Lenôtre's recommendation so that the air inside the jar is all sterilized. For me it works with all the jams, year after year and I never get mold in my jams.
  10. NOTE: If you want to keep your jams light in colour, only cook 1 1/2 pounds of fruit a time. With more fruit, it takes longer for the jam to reach the right point of doneness and darkens in the process. Strawberry and peach jams have exactly the same reaction and get very dark if you cook more then 1 1/2 pound a time. Divide the ingredients proportionally and cook in 3 batches for light coloured jams.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • gingerroot
  • Happyolks
  • Cordelia
  • AntoniaJames
  • TheWimpyVegetarian

7 Reviews

lauren6318 August 18, 2012
turning the jars upside down will seal the jars but is not sufficient to kill all the bacteria and make sure there is no risk of botulism. you MUST put jam or preserves in a pressure cooker or how water bath for proper canning to store jam of any kind. This will not matter if you plan to eat the jam immediately.

Reference: google it. theres a ton.
gingerroot July 14, 2010
I'm going to search my little island for a fig tree to plant in my yard...just to make this jam! YUM!
Happyolks July 14, 2010
gahh! i love figs! i must must must brave this recipe!
Cordelia December 11, 2009
Love fig jam and this combination sounds just out of this world. I will try it very soon!
AntoniaJames December 9, 2009
Maria Teresa, the color isn't as good because you have to cook all of the fruit longer when you have more of it, and the longer you cook it, the more dull the mixture becomes . . . Although I typically make several dozen jars of jam of the same kind in one "jamming" session, I keep the batch size to about the same as yours. Brilliant minds think alike!!
Maria T. December 9, 2009
Antonia, maybe the photo came out darker but the jam is light golden brown. I forgot to mention in the recipe that you should cook only 1 172 pounds of fruit per time otherwise it takes longer to reach the right point and darkens in the process. Straberry and peach have exactly the same reaction and get very dark if you cook 1 1/2 pound a time.
TheWimpyVegetarian December 9, 2009
I love just about anything with figs and love the look of your fig jam recipe. I'm definitely going to make this one. I can't find fresh figs in our stores after Thanksgiving though. Do you think I could soak dried figs in some king of liquid like Grappa or Port first to softened them and then use in this recipe? I do that for a chocolate and fig sauce I make, that I'm going to add here if I get time this week, but wasn't sure about jam.