Monday, 6 April 2009

Guavas and figs.

The end of Summer doesn't worry us, the days are still very warm, the Autumn sunsets here have to be seen to be believed and we have the added bonus of a very tasty bounty that appears now.
Figs and Red Cherry Guavas or as the locals call the cherry guava 'porpay' or porpieh (sounds more like 'poor-pear')

I have been picking and cooking everything this week, The Guavas are the darkest and the sweetest this year, even after making a large stock we ran out of Guava jelly last year when the kids turned from Aussie vegemite kids to Norfolk Guava jelly kids.
Norfolk Island red Guava Jelly
all you need is
*Ripe Guavas *Sugar *Water.
In a large saucepan, almost cover guavas with water and boil for One and a half hours or until colour has been extracted.
Measure strained liquid, allowing 1 cup of juice to 1 cup of sugar.
Boil quickly or until it sets on a cold saucer.
Bottle in sterilized jars.

I have also found 2 awesome recipes for Fig jam, and although the recipes say they don't keep for very long, only a month or two, they may be gobbled up before then anyway.
Easy FIG Jam
*1kg figs *750g Sugar *1 tablespoon of all spice *1 tablespoon of cinnamon *juice of half a lemon *handful of chopped lemon rind.
  1. Cut Figs into chunks, choose how chunky you want your jam to be. If the skins are greenish and hard, cut into smaller pieces. Ripe fig skin will soften nicely while boiling.
  2. Approx measure or weigh figs to determine the same proportion of sugar is used.
  3. Add spices, lemon juice and rind. Cover with sugar and allow to sit for 2 hours.
  4. Slowly bring the mixture to the boil over 15-20 minutes. Slowly boil for 1 hour. Cool.
  5. Slowly boil for 15 minutes the next day. Cool.
  6. Pour into airtight container that has been scorched with boiling water. Refrigerate.
  7. For variations, add freshly roasted or dry fried almonds.
FIG sesame JAM
*1 cup Sugar *One and a half cups water divided *Approx 1kg fresh figs, trimmed and cut into small pieces *2 strips of fresh lemon zest *2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice *4 tablespoons of dark rum * splash of Vanilla extract *1/4 of cup of sesame seeds.
  1. Toast sesame seeds in a heavy pan over medium heat until they are a shade darker, set aside to cool.
  2. Simmer sugar and one cup of water in a heavy based saucepan,stirring until sugar is dissolved.
  3. Gently stir in figs, zest,rum, vanilla and lemon juice and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally until think and syrupy.
  4. As the jam becomes, well, jam-like, check the consistency. If it seems too thick and chunky for your liking, stir in a little of the remaining water.
  5. When it looks properly jammy, remove from heat and gently stir in the sesame seeds.
  6. The jam will keep, covered in the fridge for a month or two ~ If you can keep your hands off it for that long.
This Jam is good mixed into icecream with honey, eaten on crackers with cheese, and stirred into plain yoghurt for a sweet fruity/nutty taste.
Red & Green.
Norfolk Island's gardens have always stood out to me as being predominately green and red, just like the landscape around the island, in the red volcanic soil as well as the variety of plants grown here.
Our tree house in the fruit laden fig tree.
The unripe fig fruit with one of the fairy mushroom seats in the background.
The delicious ripened fruit, we have eaten so many straight from the tree.
If you look closely under the fig tree, you may see a rare fig fairy, but be quick, before she disappears.

3 comments: said...

Great shots !...

Ciao from Italy

Radka said...

Good day. You have a nice blog. And your photos I like, I wish a nice day. Radka.

Mary on Norfolk Island said...

Amazing what you come across when you start surfing for ides for guavas! Have guava jelly coming out of my ears, it is such a good season for them Try combining it with few feijoada!