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Candied Figs

52 fresh figs
2 cups sugar
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
water to cover

Wash figs and remove stems carefully just to the base with a tiny
bit remaining. (this will help the fig keep its shape and you will
have a beautiful finished product.) The figs should be whole and
ripe but still firm, Don't use over-ripe, broken or torn figs.

Day 1 :

Combine all ingredients in a heavy-bottomed pot. Bring to a gentle
boil, covered and then lower to a simmer and cook uncovered for 1
hour. You don't want the figs to break so don't move them around
too much, but you can gently stir them every ten minutes or so, to
keep them moist on top.

After 1 hour of cooking is over, turn off heat and cover. Do not
remove from pan. Let figs sit 24 hours.

Day 2 :

Bring figs to a boil again in the same pan and simmer for 1/2 hour.
Turn off stove and cover as before and let sit for 24 hours again.

Day 3 :

Bring figs to a boil in the same pan and simmer for 1/2 hour again.
Let figs cool, and gently transfer them to a cookie sheet lined
with waxed paper. Don't pack them together like sardines, but you
should be able to get 25 on a sheet depending on the size of your
figs. Extra juices should be skimmed off with a spoon, or you will
end up with fig-brittle!

Place the pans in a low oven, 150 to 200 degrees F depending on
your oven, for 24 hours, check them after 12 hours, you don't want
them to cook, just to dry.

They should still be fairly soft and hard to pick up by hand at
this stage. If they already seem like dried apricots at this stage,
turn the oven to the lowest setting and proceed immediately to day
4 instructions.

Day 4 :

Turn figs over carefully to dry the other side for 24 more hours.
They should still be soft, but fairly easy to pick up and turn over
with your fingers. When they are done, they will be a bit sticky.
They should be chewy, with a similar texture to dried apricots or
raisins. If you end up with hard and dry figs, don't despair!
Chop them up and give to friends as ice cream topping!

Store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to
a year.

You can double this recipe, but use a very big pan because you
don't want the figs to be crushed or broken. It doesn't hurt the
taste but the finished product will be much prettier.


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