Saturday, 24 December 2011

Candied Figs, Sikalaki gliko

above: candied figs with ginger
below: ginger sugar

I have a fig tree that specialises in producing unripe figs. To be fair it has produced some ripe figs too. The figs from the first crop ripen well and are large. Those from the second crop are plentiful, small and don't usually ripen. This year we had an usually warm April and October and the tree has produced a supply of ripe figs from July to November. We ate them fresh from the tree and I made fig chutney and fig jam too.
I picked the last few that hadn't ripened and this year found a recipe for candied figs that requires unripe figs. Figs are preserved in this way in Greece and Turkey. For the recipe follow the link here Mama's Taverna  which is a Greek food blog.

 I made some additions and I used less sugar. For the first batch I added lemon zest to the vanilla and cloves. For the second batch I added ginger and cloves. I made some ginger sugar by blitzing about 1 oz peeled root ginger with the sugar till the root ginger disappeared. It smelt wonderful.
I used this to make the syrup. Next time I will try it with a bit more ginger.
The recipe has several stages but each one doesn't take too long and the end product is well worth it.

TIP The pan you boil the figs in will have a sticky residue left on it. You could use elbow grease and a scourer as long as it's not a non stick pan but much easier is to put some cooking oil on a cloth and wipe the pan out with that and the gunk comes off easily. Thanks Rachel for this tip.