Figs are well loved in our home. Before I met my husband he was deliberating between moving to Italy or Australia. He spent time teaching and touring in Italy which included a momentous trip climbing a mountain. During the climb he came upon a fig tree. No fig has ever (or no doubt will ever) match the glory of this mythical fig!

But I was gifted a big box of figs recently that were a bit too ripe to eat uncooked so I decided to make some jam and chutney. I don’t really follow recipes unless I’m writing one to teach a preserving class but I had a go at writing one for these figs. It goes without saying that you should use sterilised jars and lids and water bath the preserves or store in the fridge (if you want more info on this, come along to one of our classes ;)) 

Spiced fig and red wine jam


  • 1 kilo ripe figs
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick/1 tspn cinnamon
  • 5 Cloves
  • 8 Cardamom Pods
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Allspice
  • 1/4 tsp Nutmeg


  1. Wash and chop the plums into quarters or eighths if they are very large.
  2. Place in a large pan with1/3 cup water.
  3. Add sugar, lemon juice & spices, heat the mixture to dissolve the sugar.
  4. Add the red wine.
  5. Simmer for 10 minutes. The figs will start to break up as they cook.
  6. After 10 minutes, bring the mixture to the boil.
  7. Boil for 10 minutes and then test to see if the jam has reached setting point.
  8. Fish out the cinnamon, cardamom and cloves, then transfer the jam to the sterilised jars.

Burnt fig chutney



  • 4 garlic cloves, diced finely
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 kilo figs
  • 2 cups balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1.5  cups sugar (or two cups if you prefer a sweeter chutney)
  • 1 tablespoon rosemary leaves, finely diced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. Cook garlic in olive oil until lightly browned
  2. Put all of the other ingredients in a large pan and mix all together well.
  3. Set over medium heat and simmer for 2.5 hours or until the chutney has thickened and is sticky. If chutney sticks, you can add a bit more water.

  4. Spoon into sterilised jars