Spiced Vanilla Fig Jam

This small-batch jam is perfect when you need a gift to give but also want to keep a little for yourself.

by Lori Rice
Spiced Vanilla Fig Jam - Photo by Lori Rice (HobbyFarms.com)
Photo by Lori Rice

With hints of clove and cardamom, this jam evokes thoughts of autumn and winter. Spread some on your morning toast, layer it on a sandwich or use it as a filling for holiday cookies.

Yield: 1 8-ounce jelly jar and 1 4-ounce jelly jar


  • 1 pound figs, destemmed and quartered
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 T. fresh lemon juice
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tsp. whole clove
  • 1 tsp. cardamom pods
  • 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

Place figs in heavy 3- to 4-quart saucepan. Add sugar, water, lemon juice, lemon zest and cinnamon stick. Place clove and cardamom in jelly bag or cheesecloth pouch, and place in saucepan.

Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Lower heat slightly to maintain low boil and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring often. When jam begins to thicken, use cold-plate test to ensure that it’s ready: Before you start making jam, place saucer or small plate in freezer; when jam has cooked amount of time specified in recipe and has started to thicken, take plate out of freezer and place about 1/2 teaspoon hot jam on plate. Let sit for 30 seconds; if it has jelled to a consistency that you could spread on toast, jam is ready to can.

Remove jam from heat. Discard spice pouch and cinnamon stick. Stir in vanilla. Transfer jam to sterilized canning jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Seal with lids and bands. Process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

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