Figo verde em calda (Green Fig Preserve)

The fig tree was introduced in Brazil at the beginning of the 16Th century by the Portuguese colonizer, and quickly spread throughout the Country. The main production, however, is concentrated in the States of São Paulo, Minas Gerais, Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina. In these States fig tree cultivation and the production of sweets from figs represent an important part of the local economy and of the local gastronomic identity. 
It is said that green fig preserve was one of Portuguese Imperial Family (in Brazil) favourite sweets.

Ingredients

  • • 500 g unripe figs
  • • 100 g sugar
  • • 1 teaspoon salt
  • For the syrup:
  • • 600 g sugar
  • • 7 cloves

Preparation method

1. Place the figs on a dishcloth with 100 g of sugar and salt. Wrap them in the dishcloth (or use a cloth bag). Rub them gently for a few minutes to clean well and to strip the skin of the figs.  
2. Rinse figs under running water and, if desired, use a knife to scrape/peel the fruit. I use figs (from my house garden) with a very thin skins and do not need to be peeled. 
3. Trim the excess stem. Make two shallow cuts (a cross, 1 mm deep) on the opposite side to the stem.  
4. Place washed figs in a pot and cover with about 1.5 litres of water. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes over a high heat. 
5. Turn off the heat and let them cool completely in the water. 
6. Drain, return the figs to the pot and cover again with about 1.5 litres of water. Cook over a high heat until the figs become tender. It may take more than 30 minutes, depending on their quality and size. 
7. Let them cool completely in the water, then drain. Return the figs to the pot, add 600 g of sugar, cloves and 1.5 litres of water. Cook over a high heat, stirring occasionally, until a thick syrup is formed (105 ° -106 ° C). It takes about 30 minutes. 
8. Serve as a dessert or snack, accompanied by a fresh cheese or a cream cheese. 

Notes
• It will taste better after a few days, and they can be kept in the refrigerator for more than 15 days.  
• To keep the figs preserve for a long time: fill jars with figs and cooking syrup, close jars, then process filled jars longer than 10 minutes in a boiling-water bath.
Posted on: 08 June 2016
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