Advocate-tested recipe

Fig Preserves

Makes about 12 (12-oz.) jars. Recipe is from “The Country Gourmet” by Miriam G. Cohn, of Port Gibson, Miss. This can be adapted for any amount of figs.

10 lbs. figs

Water for rinsing figs

6 tbls. baking soda, divided

3/4 lb. sugar for each pound of figs

1 cup water for each pound of figs

3 lemons, very thinly sliced, seeds discarded

1. Carefully pick through figs and remove those that are over-ripe or broken. Do not peel or remove stems. Sterilize jars or run them through the sanicycle of the dishwasher.

2. Place figs in a large bowl, sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of baking soda and cover with water. Let sit a few minutes and then gently pour off water. Repeat with water and baking soda two more times and then rinse in plain water without soda for at least three times until water is clean.

3. In a large pot, combine sugar, 1 cup of water for each pound of figs and sliced lemons. Bring to a boil and let continue boiling for 15 minutes.

4. Add figs to the pot, cover and cook rapidly for 40 minutes.

5. Gently remove figs from pot with slotted spoon. Continue cooking syrup for 30 to 45 minutes more, depending on how thick you want your syrup to be.

6. Return figs to the syrup. Cook 5 minutes more.

7. Put figs in hot jars. Pour boiling syrup over figs in jars. Wipe tops of jars with a clean, damp cloth. Wash new lids and bring almost to a boil in a small pot. Remove lids, dry with a clean cloth and put on tops of jars. Secure with a clean ring.

8. Process filled jars by placing them in a large pot or canner. Fill pot with water at least 2 inches over tops of jars. Bring to a full boil and let boil for 15 minutes. Remove from pot. Let cool.