Fig Marmalade, or Marmellata di Fichi: A number of years ago I went to Puglia,
where the figs are spectacular, like eating nectar, and so good that I've never really enjoyed Tuscan figs since -- they're just not as rich. This said, good figs make for wonderful marmalades. You'll need:
Prep Time: 12 hours, 30 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 13 hours, 10 minutes
- 2 1/4 pounds (1 k) figs
- 1 1/8 pounds (500 g, or 2 1/8 cups) sugar
- The grated zest of an organically grown lemon
- 3 tablespoons whisky or brandy (optional)
Wash the figs, break them open (be on the lookout for bugs), and combine them with the sugar in a bowl. Cover them and let them rest overnight. The next morning transfer them to a pot and heat them over a moderate flame, stirring lest they scorch, until they come to a boil. Add the lemon zest, reduce the heat, and simmer, skimming away the foam occasionally, until a drop on an inclined plate doesn't run. Transfer the marmalade to sterile jars, seal them, sterilize them, and when they have cooled transfer them to your pantry.
Note: As a variation, stir 3 tablespoons of whiskey or brandy in with the lemon zest.
Yield: several jars of fig marmalade.