How to use those backyard figs for a fig and pear jam

The fig season seems to be hit or miss for Austinites, but the trees I’ve seen lately are heavy with fruit.

If you are lucky enough to have one — or want to buy some from the store — here’s a quick fig and pear jam recipe that will preserve them for long after summer has ended.

MORE: The 5 do’s and don’ts of foraging figs (and other urban food)

Figs and pears sweeten and thicken this jam that’s easy to make if you can find freshly ripe figs. Contributed by Hearthmark

Fig and Pear Jam

Terrific on crostini or as an addition to any cheese board, this jam can pair as easily with sweet or savory dishes.

2 cups chopped peeled pears
2 cups chopped fresh figs
4 tablespoons pectin
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon water
3 cups sugar

Combine the first five ingredients in a 6-quart stainless-steel or enameled Dutch oven. Bring the mixture to a full rolling boil that cannot be stirred down, over high, stirring constantly.

Add the sugar, stirring to dissolve. Return the mixture to a full rolling boil. Boil hard 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim the foam, if necessary.

Ladle the hot jam into a hot jar, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Wipe the jar rim. Center the lid on the jar. Apply the band, and adjust to fingertip-tight. Place the jar in the boiling water canner. Repeat until all the jars are filled.

Process the jars 10 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Turn off heat; remove the lid, and let the jars stand 5 minutes. Remove the jars and cool. Makes about 4 (1/2-pint) jars.

— From “Ball Canning Back to Basics: A Foolproof Guide to Canning Jams, Jellies, Pickles, and More” (Oxmoor House, $16.99)

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