Here I am. Sorry for the prolonged absence. Two weeks ago I moved into a new apartment. The cookbooks are still in a box but I unpacked the last of the pots and pans today. This new place has it’s flaws, not least of which is the wood paneling in the kitchen, but it also has it’s charms. There’s a big old porcelain double sink in the kitchen and a claw foot tub in the bathroom. And there’s a food co-op a couple blocks away and a farmers market just down the street on Sundays. I think I love co-op bulk bins even more than I love farmers markets.
Anyway, back to the apartment. When I came by the place to sign my lease in September, the landlady took me around to the back of the house to show me where the trash cans are. Then she told me she needed to show me one more thing. The fig tree. She made sure I knew how to recognize a ripe fig and insisted that I help myself. Well I nearly died. Growing up I never knew anyone who had a fruit tree. I don’t think I even realized that one could have a fruit tree. I fairly recently became aware of this phenomenon of the backyard fruit tree and I’ve been preoccupied with the notion of having one ever since. Living in an apartment building with not a patch of dirt anywhere in sight, it seemed like an unattainable dream.
Last weekend I picked about two quarts of figs and made a big pot of jam. It’s not pretty, but it is delicious. Now I just have to figure out what to do with it all. Maybe it’s time to make more muffins.
- 2 quarts ripe figs
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup honey, or to taste
Trim off the stem ends of the figs and coarsely chop them. Combine the chopped figs, water, and honey in a large, heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until very thick, about 2 to 2 1/2 hours. As it gets thicker, you’ll need to stir more often to prevent it from burning on the bottom. Once it’s thick enough, remove from heat and let cool a bit. Transfer to a jar and refrigerate.