When we first moved to France 7 years ago we didn’t miss much, but we did crave for Branston Pickle. However, since discovering this delicious recipe, Branston no longer makes it onto our wish lists of goodies to ask for when we have visitors from the UK. In fact I struggle to think of anything now when I get the inevitable question “What would you like us to bring you from England?” “I don’t mind what you bring, as long as you don’t bring the weather,” is all I can think of these days.
I haven’t blogged about food before, mainly because so many people out there are doing such a fine job of it. BUT, it’s that time again, when the fig trees are laden with fruit, you’ve eaten your fill, you’ve made some jam and are wondering what else to do with the basketful of figs sitting on your table. Sound familiar? No? It must be just me then!
Anyway, for those of you who are lucky enough to have a fig tree in your garden, or (like me) have a generous French neighbour who delivers a basket of figs to your table, then here is one of my favourite recipes:
1.5kg Black figs quartered ( or any figs can be used)
1 kg sugar
3 onions chopped roughly
500g mixed raisins and sultanas
1 lt good quality red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons Ground ginger
2 teaspoons all spice
2 tablespoons chilli sauce (sweet or not up to you!)
6 garlic cloves crushed
salt and pepper
Place all ingredients together and bring to the boil, then simmer for 2 hours till good chutney consistency (whatever that is).
Jar…. This chutney gets better with age (although we have never had it long enough to find out!).
This sounds delicous. Figs are my favourite fruit. I particularly love them eaten in France and Italy, where I think they are best.ReplyDelete
I am your new follower
Fresh figs off the tree in SW France are the best (although I must admit I haven't had the chance to taste Italian figs - I'm sure they're equally as good).ReplyDelete
Thanks for following Helen, welcome aboard :) xx
Can you use dried figs in this recipe?
Figs are so expensive here if you haven't a tree to raid.
Hello Anita, sorry for the late reply I've only just come across your comment.Delete
I don't know if dried figs will work as I've only ever made it with fresh figs, but it's worth a try I guess. Let me know how you get on if you decide to give it a go.
Hello.. I just found your site... It's great and recipe sounds tasty. We live in the California high desert and are blessed with two Mission (black) figs and one white fig tree(s). The summers are very hot nearly 110 F. so, the fruit ripens very fast with generally three harvests. I have never made chutney before this season and looking for something different. I am a bit confused about cooking it to the chutney stage.... Should I cook it for two hours at a simmer?? We do not care much for fig jam; therefore, searching for "interesting" condiments’ and your recipe fits the bill. Any suggestions for a substitute for sultanas. Our grocer does not stock them. I understand that they are a "white raisin?"ReplyDelete
Thanks again for your blog.
Hi Dorothy, I was reading your comment, I use this site for my baking needs in Ca, bulk prices are good and they deliver very fast. Here is the site for the mixed colored raisins which are good in Chutney's, worth checking out & adding to your pantry. http://nuts.com/driedfruit/raisins/medley.htmlDelete
Hi Dorothy, sorry for the late reply. Yes I simmer it for two hours. If you can't get sultanas, any type of raisin will do. Hope you enjoy it as much as we do!Delete
I am in Dallas making your recipe right now!ReplyDelete
Hi Thomas, that's great - hope you enjoy it!Delete
Thanks for the recipe. I have just made the chutney and am ready to put it into jars. However it seems quite vinegary...any ideas or does it mellow out with time? I have used fresh black figs and good quality red wine vinegar (I live in Kefalonia, Greece)
Hello, sorry for not responding longer - I've only just come across your comment. I'm not sure what the problem might be as I've never found it vinegary. Maybe it will mellow with time, but we usually find it's good to eat virtually straight away. Hope it works out for you :)Delete
I have always used this recipe and found I need to cook it for longer to allow the vinegar to burn off. I do have tendency to cook it on the lowest heat possible so it can be simmering for 4hrs sometimes although that is usually when I make a slightly larger quantity ! I also mix sultanas with golden raisins and sometimes use red onions tooDelete
Hi there! Living in Greece too! Actually have relatives in Kefalonia too. Just had a load of black figs delivered by my in-laws today..straight from their tree. Must be around 3-4kgs. So trying to figure out what to do with them. It's very hot and they need to be taken care of quickly..no more fridge room..Question: do you peel the figs..or put them in with skin on? If anyone else knows the answer I appreciate of course as I'm planning to make this tomorrow. First time in the chutney world. Thanks!ReplyDelete
Hi Christina, I love Kefalonia - we visited there when I was pregnant with my first child, over 22 years ago. In answer to your question, no you don't need to peel the figs - just chop them whole. Couldn't be easier! Good luck :)Delete
Hi Nikky, we live in Spain and we found a wild fig tree locally, made your chutney and within 3 hours was jarred, labelled and eaten with a cheese sandwich...Absolutely gorgeous! thank you so much.ReplyDelete
Thanks for this. I live in Southern Italy and have 16 trees. Never know what to do with them all and sadly most end up on the ground.ReplyDelete
Just with I could find a supply of low sugar here - we both have diabitis!
Can this chutney be canned?
That is can it be precessed in a hotwater bath like jam successfully for storage?
thanks for your recipe we have a massive fig tree that is about to explode!
Bayside gardener: yes, of course.ReplyDelete
Use 2/3 of the qty (1 Kg.) chopped and mix it with 100 ml. of dry white wine (Entre-deux-huitres) + 400 ml. of water. Let stand for 12 to 24 hrs.
Brilliant recipe - we are in Spain and very much enjoyed the chutney!! Great use of the figs off the tree :)ReplyDelete
THE MANNING FAMILY
I've just come across your blog while looking for recipes for figs. I live in Cyprus and have access to a number of black fig trees and other fruits. After reading all the positive comments I think I will be giving this recipe a go later today. I hope you won't stop at figs as would be grateful for any advice for large quantities of oranges, Kumquats, lemons and grapefruits which will be kindly donated in the winter.ReplyDelete
Hi thanks so much for this great recipe, it really is a fab substitute for those of us who miss Branston. I made a load last month and have just put another big pot on to bubble away having collected the last of our figs here in Marche Italy today. I'd like to pass it on to a Facebook group of expat cooks in italy, is that ok with you - will give you credit and put a link to your blog (if you like) of course. I was only missing the allspice so have omitted that but its still delicious without. Marina WReplyDelete
Hi Marina, glad you liked the recipe. Yes of course you are welcome to pass on the link on facebook. It is a great recipe - we're just making our second batch for this year :)Delete
marve, thanks so much, have passed it on and given a few jars to other chutney loving mates here who are all giving it a big thumbs up :-) MDelete
Hi! I'm in Portugal and we have just one fig tree but after a good spring prune, we just can't keep up!ReplyDelete
I'd never made chutney before but it's mango chutney we missed on moving out here (some stores do now sell it) so I made nectarine as a substitute - like nectar! So with a tomato glut (one UK cook calls chutney "glutney" :-)) I was soon making jars and jars of tomato chutney, as well as freezing and drying. Will make good Xmas gifts.
We'd been freezing and drying the figs too. Made jam but that turned out way too sweet. Suddenly had a light-bulb moment - why not fig chutney? So turned to your page and will give your recipe a try. But as it's an experiment, I don't want to make too much first time. How many jars/weight does this produce?
In answer to your 'good chutney consistency' - I always say it's ready when you reach the 'schlooping' point! It's the sound the spoon makes moving through the chutney as you make the final stir round.
I made this and it is by far the best chutney I have made thank you for sharing about to make the 2nd batch now!ReplyDelete
I had a kilo of black figs in the freezer. When it accidentally defrosted I needed to use them in a hurry so I made this chutney, adjusting the quantities. I did not have any chilli sauce, or paprika, so added a teaspoon of dry mustard instead, chopped fresh ginger instead of dried and a mix of cider vinegar and malt vinegar instead of wine vinegar. Quite a departure from the original, but it turned out just fine.ReplyDelete
Hi Nikki, Just about to make your Fig chutney could youReplyDelete
please confirm if you need to peel figs.
Regards Mary Goodwin
Hi Mary,sorry only just saw you message. no you dont have to peal the figs - hope im not too late and good luck. NikkiDelete
Hi Nikki, Help! chutney made and in jars I for got toDelete
put the onions in what do you suggest.
Nothing you can do, just enjoy it!Delete
Trying your recipe with 2kgs of figs I found in my freezer. Will let you know, but it's smelling damn good !Delete
After reading the comments about the recipe being "too vinegary" in certain parts of the world, I cut the sugar to just over 1/2 in the recipe and used a medium grade balsamic (not too sweet) instead of red wine vinegar. We don't regularly get "good quality" red wine vinegar in the US. Was awesome!ReplyDelete
The chutney is excellent but I found it still too wet even after simmering for 3+ hours. I took out about one third of the liquid before bottling, so now have a fantastic sweet, spicy vinegar which will be perfect for pickling onions or shallots. If you don't need this then I would suggest cutting the vinegar a little.ReplyDelete
Can I make chutney with the smaller, second flush of figs (turkey brown) which won't ripen now that autumn has arrived here in the uk? Your recipe sounds delicious, but so far my 1 tree has only given me a first flush of a few figs - just enough for 1 a day over a couple of weeks, and so good to eat fresh it would be a shame to cook them...ReplyDelete
I made this last year and it was fantastic, a big hit with friends and family! About to make another batch with this year's figs.ReplyDelete