Bowl Of Figs

Now Bring Us Some Figgy Pudding: Fig Recipes from August

August is the season for figs in Vancouver. I know this because on a bi-daily basis, my neighbour comes over with a huge bowl of figs for me to turn into something delicious.  He has 5 trees that bare 2 kinds of figs of which I don’t know the name, but each one has green skin, one variety is large with sweet, mild white flesh that turns golden as it gets really ripe, and a smaller variety that has red flesh and is a bit tangier.


Two years ago I used the white-fleshed figs when they were really ripe to make fig ginger jam.  I skinned every fig and just used the flesh for this jam with lots of texture from the seeds and chunks of candied ginger.  It turned out so well that I saved and savoured the jars knowing they would have to last.  One sad, sad day my last two jars hit the tile floor on the laundry room and smashed in a glassy figgy mess.  As I was contemplating licking it off the floor (and picking the glass off my tongue from the splatter that hit my leg), I decided I better make some more to avoid this sort of desperate craziness.

In 2009, I used both kinds of figs together to make jam, again making Fig Ginger Jam , but this time I left on the skins.  This changed the colour and texture of the jam as I needed to pulse the jam with an immersion blender to chop up the skins this time making it thicker.  And because I had added the candied ginger in the jam before blending, there were no yummy candied ginger chunks.  The colour was not nearly as nice as the 2008 jam (which was a rich, shiny, golden colour) but it tasted just as good.

I made a second Jam in 2009 as well, Fig, Brandy and Honey Mandarine.  This had a lot more citrus and some richness from the brandy both of which went very well with the figs.

Then came August 2010:


I don’t know if it is a love for figs, the daily harvest delivery from my neighbour, or the squirrel in me but I made 7 recipes from the figs this year:

Oh, and I froze some halved figs too.  Whew.  I actually went out yesterday to see if the trees had any more ripe figs (um, crazy) and thankfully, that’s it for the year.  I can put this figgy month to bed enjoying a pantry full of riches, of the fig persuasion.

About the Author : Stephanie Rose

A city girl who learned to garden and it changed everything. Author, artist, Master Gardener. Better living through plants.

View all posts by Stephanie Rose

  1. meemsnyc
    meemsnycAugust 31,10

    Yummy yummy! Thanks for posting all these great fig recipes. So awesome!!

  2. Lori E
    Lori EAugust 31,10

    Oh I am so jealous. I love fresh figs and can never get them. The ones I bought at Costco were awful, tasteless blobs.

  3. mamaraby
    mamarabyAugust 31,10

    Color me green with envy. I’d l.o.v.e. a neighbor with fig trees. On my dream list is always a Chicago Hardy Fig. Some day…

  4. thyme2garden
    thyme2gardenAugust 31,10

    “figgy” is a great word. I would totally incorporate this into my vocabulary, but sadly, I don’t have a fig tree! The thought of licking precious fig jam off the floor sounds so ridiculous, yet I can totally relate somehow. I’m glad you didn’t do it, though. :)

  5. Char's Gardening
    Char's GardeningAugust 31,10

    I love figs, and can’t wait until my fig tree starts to bear fruit. I planted it last year, it was just a rooting someone gave me. This year it’s about 3 feet tall maybe next year I will get a few figs probably not enough for these great recipes but one can hope.

  6. catmint
    catmintAugust 31,10

    Don’t have any recipes for figs handy. This is my first visit, and love your blog, so much energy seems like the therapy is working!

  7. mac
    macAugust 31,10

    You are cooking up a figgy storm, thanks for this timely post, I’ll have to collect more figs and try some of your recipes.

  8. vrtlarica
    vrtlaricaSeptember 1,10

    My fig tree produces about 10 to 20 figs each year. It is an old tree, but we keep it small.

    I love how you try new recipes each time and what is equally important – you write down the results.

  9. Heather @ Dusty Bay
    Heather @ Dusty BaySeptember 1,10

    Hi Stevie, loved your figgy post! We have a little fig tree but it’s not producing fruit yet – I’ll keep some of your recipes though when it does! Take care…

  10. Marguerite
    MargueriteSeptember 1,10

    I LOVE figs! The only time I’ve ever eaten them fresh was on a trip in Australia. oh my, they are wonderful. So jealous that you get them fresh and get jam to boot!

  11. Daphne
    DaphneSeptember 1,10

    I have to get myself a couple of fig trees. I think they tend to die back to the ground every year (in my zone), but then come back. I do love figs.

  12. Stevie
    StevieSeptember 1,10

    thanks, everyone – I knew I was lucky but didn’t realize HOW lucky until you all commented about not being able to get figs. I do wish I could send some over to all of you.

  13. mary ellen
    mary ellenSeptember 1,10

    Found your site thru Therapeutic Landscapes, and opened up to your figgy article! I’m looking at the 15 tiny figs on my little tree willing them to ripen up NOW so I can try some of these recipes; but which first? I need volumes of figs so I can try them all out! I see a row of fig trees in my future…

  14. ricki - sprig to twig
    ricki - sprig to twigSeptember 1,10

    One fig on our tree this year…more reasons to wish for more.

  15. Laura
    LauraSeptember 1,10

    I do hope you are compiling these recipes into a book! I could never imagined so many different ways to fall in love with figs! Yet you seem to have them all. As for the jam…….drool!

  16. michelle
    michelleSeptember 2,10

    I have a serious case of fig envy – how lucky you are to have such a generous neighbor! Should I come across a treasure trove of figs I’ll be back to check out your recipes.

  17. Gillian
    GillianSeptember 2,10

    Ooooh I am so jealous – a glut of figs. Nothing tastes as good as figs straight from the tree. I was salivating just reading about your figgy adventures.

  18. Wendy
    WendySeptember 2,10

    I’m going to have to try these – I’m particularly interested in the balsamic caramelized figs – yum!! I love the title of this post – I’ve been singing about figgy pudding during the last couple weeks of fig season. I’d really love to get a fig tree. They’re such producers, so yummy, and as you’ve shown here, so versatile and so gorgeous!

  19. melanie watts
    melanie wattsSeptember 2,10

    How lucky you are to have access to so many figs. Thanks for all the yummy sounding recipes. the yellow figs should be in the supermarket soon so perhaps I can try a recipe or 2.

  20. Angela
    AngelaSeptember 3,10

    Wow, wow, wow! What a nice neighbor and what a lucky girl to receive such a gift of figs. You’ll have fig goodness to enjoy all winter long.

  21. Autumn Belle
    Autumn BelleSeptember 3,10

    The figs looks fresh and delicious and the recipes are yummy. I have never eaten a fresh fig before. We use preserved/dried figs in herbal drinks.

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