Sometimes the easiest recipes yield the best results. The other day I found fresh figs in our market. It seemed kind of strange to me that I found them as i had seen figs in the late summer and October… but heck – who was I to argue! It was fig time – and it was perfect timing. Nothing beats the versatility of a great fig chutney in the kitchen.
We use this simple chutney with cheese/crackers, on meats, etc – even adding a few tablespoons to a marinade that we brushed on before making some pork chop the other night. OH – delicious! And simple!
The recipe is also super easy to adapt. You can add ginger or carmelized onions, or cloves, etc to change up the flavors of your fig chutnet. We used just the figs this time around as we have been altering the flavor of the chutney POST creation. We’ve added couple tablespoons with a squirt of dijon mustard and mixed it together to make a sandwich spread…….. we’ve added this basic chutney plus some sherry to make a great au jus for some pork chops (and it’s delicious with chicken too… I might add), etc. The possibilites are limited only by your mind, that’s for sure.
The Chicklet has been delighting in “dipping” her foods (mostly her fingers…LOL) in to everything she eats these days, so we’ve been obliging her developing taste buds with a wide variety of goodies to dip in to. Most kids I know go straight for the sweet stuff… but not my little imp. She definitely prefers the savory. So she’s enjoyed this mixed with dijon mustard more frequently than just eating it plain. I think it’s too sweet for her.
That sweetness comes mainly from the figs themselves. The recipe calls for little sugar, in comparison to how many figs (2 pounds) I used. I tasted the figs prior to cooking, so I knew they were already sweet enough. Be sure to taste your figs too, before cooking. That way you can adjust your sweetness level to your preference.
Next up on the order of business for the Chicklet and I: Making some Christmas Cookies together. I think we will start with these roll out cookies and move on to a recipe that a student of mine just gave me for Molassess Crinkles. (I can’t wait to try them… they sound fabulous!).
My in-laws are coming in town next week too. It will be the first time they have been able to come to see the Chicklet. I can’t wait for them to meet her! I so know they will fall in love with her as we have as well. She’s quite the little dreamboat, I tell ya.
What are you plans before the Holidays?
Are there any recipes you are seeking?
Please leave a comment and let me know!
I’m ready to get back to creating and exploring in the ktichen. And now the Chicklet is DYING to mix, stir, scrunch, smoosh, and help out in any way she can. The sound of the mixer is like music to her ears – she comes running and wants to cook along with me.
I LOVE THAT!
Anyway.. enough of my prattling along…. here’s the basic recipe for Fig Chutney that we use. Adapt it and use it as you will. (It’s great with ginger!)
Simple Fig Chutney – the basic recipe
Makes 4 pint jars + a little for munching
2 pounds fresh figs, cleaned, stemmed and halved
2 cups red wine vinegar
2/3 cup of sugar
2/3 cup of water
- Put liquid into a non-reactive, large pot over medium heat.
- Add sugar and stir until dissolved.
- Add figs (cleaned, stemmed and halved) and bring to a boil.
- Reduce to a simmer and allow to simmer on low – partially covered – for an hour. The figs will reduce to become deep and smooth. The consistency will be thick, but not dense nor dry. (It will thicken up as it cools.)
- Can according to your canning instructions – or store in jars in the refrigerator.
(We’ve always canned these and given the extras away as gifts to neighbors and friends…. so i can’t tell you how long an “uncanned” jar of chutney will last in the fridge. Maybe 3 weeks or so?)