Monday, October 17, 2011

Fig Thyme Jam

Figs are a true delight. Raw, they’re so sweet and complex you can enjoy them as they are with cheese or cured meats. Roasted in a baked good or alone, the gooey insides further liquefy into a sweet melted mess. A favorite preparation is to half them, plop a little pat of goat cheese on top, then wrap them in bacon and roast for 20 minutes or so.

This time, I decided to make jam with my figs. (Well technically these are preserve since the shape of the figs is preserved in the finished product. ) I’m trying to get a jump on  holiday gifts, and I’ve found homemade jam always goes over well. I got this interesting recipe from Bon Appetit magazine, here. The thyme gives it an herbal note, which matches the figs well. It also lends a savory element which complements a savory cracker, cheese or meat well.

Figs are in season late summer and early fall. If you’re in Nashville, I found these tasty figs at Whole Foods. The varieties of these figs weren’t labeled when I bought them, but I believe the brown ones are Mission figs and the green ones are Calimyrna figs. I only used the Mission figs in this recipe.

I love this recipe because it includes sorghum, which is a syrup made from a cereal grain. It’s smoky and complex and goes well with the figs. I was afraid it’d overpower it in the recipe, but not so. Here are the ingredients you’ll need, minus the sorghum. I quartered the figs before I started cooking them.

You don’t need to add artificial pectin to the recipe as many fruits already contain pectin, and citrus has an especially high concentration. So the orange zest you add will make the jam set. It won’t be as firm as a jam recipe that calls for artificial pectic, but that never bothers me.

The end result was only a few small mini jelly jars (each holds 4 oz.), but the smaller batch makes the jam extra special. Enjoy!


Fig Thyme Jam

Yield: 1 1/2 cups

Prep Time: 10

Cook Time: 30

The canning directions are derived from "The Joy of Jams, Jellies, and other Sweet Preserves" by Linda Ziedrich. The recipe, as noted above, is from the September issue of "Bon Appetit" magazine.


1/2 cup sorghum syrup or honey
1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
2 sprigs thyme
Pinch of sea salt
1 pound fresh figs, stemmed, quartered


Place sorghum syrup in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add orange zest, thyme sprigs, and pinch of salt. Simmer sorghum mixture for 1 minute. Add figs. Continue to simmer, gently stirring occasionally, until figs are soft but still hold their shape, 5–10 minutes, depending on firmness of figs.

Ladle the preserves into jars. Add lids and rings, and process the jars for 10 minutes in a boiling-water bath. Remove and let cool. Make sure you hear the "pop" or the jars will need to be refrigerated

Bon Appetit Magazine, September 2011


5 Responses to “Fig Thyme Jam”

  1. 1

    becca — October 17, 2011 @ 9:23 pm

    yum!! yes please. i love me a meat, jam, cheese combo

    • Annakate replied: — October 17th, 2011 @ 10:20 pm

      Haha! Seriously though, this jam is delightful with cheese. I pretty much ate an entire little jar with a block of white cheddar and crackers the other day.

  2. 2

    djb — October 18, 2011 @ 4:53 pm

    you can bring my jar by anytime, just leave it on the porch if i’m not home. i would say leave it in the mailbox but i’m pretty sure we don’t need to treat the carrier that well…

  3. 3

    pt — October 23, 2011 @ 3:44 pm

    That does sound delicious. You have opened up a world of tastes for me….I am not usually a sweet and savory kinda muncher…but I have come round!!

    • Annakate replied: — October 24th, 2011 @ 6:01 pm

      Mom! I love it. Thanks for posting. We need to get some menu ideas together for Christmas! I can’t wait to cook with you…

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