Fig is one of the fruits for which I knew the English name before I knew its Tamil name (my own mother tongue). Although I have heard the word, I never knew its meaning.Aththi Pazham is the beautiful name I have heard so many times, but never it was Fig.. Always thought of fig as an exotic item, but little did I know that it is so easily available in India.. Recently I was visiting a market and I saw a vendor have a cart full of a pinkish brown produce which looked so much like beetroot, but it was different.. My husband asked me - Do you know what that is? I was like - I am not sure. He said that is Fresh figs!! I was like wow, looks so big and so much like beetroot.. I have mostly seen and used dried ones that are much easier to get.. For this recipe also I have used the dried version only.. Figs are very nutritious and have lots of Iron in them..
Dried Figs - 1 cup
Sugar - 3 table spoons
Honey - 3 table spoons
Lemon Juice - 1/2 tea spoon
Dried Ginger - 1 inch piece
Water - 2 table spoons
Chop the dried figs very finely. For me it was easier to chop with scissors.. Smaller the better.
Heat a pan with all the ingredients and keep it on low until the sugar dissolves
Increase the heat to medium when the sugar dissolves and mash the figs as they cook With the help of a masher. This will bring out the flavor of the figs and the aroma will scent the entire house
Cook it until it reaches a pasty consistency. It will become more thick as it cools. Another way to check it is - Keep a plate in the freezer when you begin the process. Remove the plate from the freezer and put a drop in it and keep it back in the freezer for a few seconds. If the consistency is correct, it would be set by then (I saw this tip here).
You can store this for around 7 days in an airtight container. If you want the shelf life longer, then you would have to do canning.
Enjoy the delicious jam with roti, bread etc. I made Fig Newtons (recipe coming soon) with it..
Health Benefits of Figs (from Wiki) – “Figs are among the richest plant sources of calcium and fiber. According to USDA data for the Mission variety, dried figs are richest in fiber, copper, manganese, magnesium, potassium, calcium, and vitamin K, relative to human needs. They have smaller amounts of many other nutrients. Figs have a laxative effect and contain many antioxidants. They are a good source of flavonoids and polyphenols including gallic acid, chlorogenic acid, syringic acid, (+)-catechin, (−)-epicatechin and rutin. In one study, a 40-gram portion of dried figs (two medium size figs) produced a significant increase in plasma antioxidant capacity.”