Dried Fig Compote

  • Serves

    makes 5-6 HALF PINTS

This preserve recipe, from Marisa McClellan, author of Food in Jars: Preserving in Small Batches Year-Round, is a balm for those mourning the passing of summer's fleeting fresh fig season. It can be made any time of year and has a deep, sophisticated flavor. It's best served with stinky cheeses, though some also enjoy it drizzled over steel cut oats on chilly mornings.


  • 2 lb. dried black mission figs, stemmed and quartered
  • 14 cup bourbon
  • 3 whole star anise
  • 8 whole cardamom pods, lightly crushed
  • Peel of 1 orange
  • Peel of 1 lemon, plus 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp. sugar
  • 14 tsp. salt


Step 1

Place figs, bourbon and 4 cups boiling water in a large, heatproof bowl; cover surface with a plate to submerge figs. Let sit until figs are plump, about 1 hour; set aside.

Step 2

Heat star anise and cardamom pods in a 4-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add figs with their soaking liquid, sugar, salt, orange and lemon peel, and juice; bring to a boil and cook, stirring often, until mixture has thickened, 20-25 minutes.

Step 3

Divide finished compote into prepared half pint jars, apply clean lids and rings and process jars in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes. When time is up, remove jars from canner and allow to cool completely before handling.

Continue to Next Story

Want more SAVEUR?

Get our favorite recipes, stories, and more delivered to your inbox.