I come across dried fig jam being sold in many places where I live. It is a popular item on a cheese board. Orange is a common”flavor”in many recipes. When I was harvesting hyssop in October I was inspired to create this variation. Anise hyssop adds both floral and subtle anise notes. This jam is quick and easy to make, no canning required. I like to serve this for afternoon tea. It goes well with butter , spread on any kind of bread or cracker. I imagine it would also be a great way to dress up a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I often used dried figs in salad dressings and marinade. One could easily thin this jam to make both of those things. I might try it as a substitute for apricot jam in my lentil loaf or mixed with grains in an autumn stuffed squash dish.
Fig and Anise Hyssop Flower Refrigerator Jam.
To a large stock pot add..
2 cups of water
12 large dried figs-stems removed and coarsely chopped
1 cup of sugar
3 generous TBSP of balsamic vinegar
Cook the mixture on medium for 10 minutes
Use a potato masher to crush, simmer until thick for 5 minutes.
1/2 tsp of pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup of fresh anise hyssop flowers
Stir your jam well, then pour into a very clean jar.
Let cool for 20 minutes then seal with a lid.
Refrigerate. This will store for many months if you keep it cold and use clean utensils for serving.
Makes 1 pint
Agastache is in the mint family. It is one of the few cultivated medicinal herbs that is native to North America. This perennial grows up to three feet in height. It has brilliant green leaves that are oval/spade shaped with pointed tips. These are oppositely arranged on a square stem and have a fuzzy underside. Anise hyssop has very small purple/blue flowers densely arranged on a spike, typically at the end of each stalk. It prefers to grow in moist habitats with full sun. When rubbed with the fingers the plant has a pleasant anise/spicy scent. This subtle flavor makes it fun to use in all kinds of recipes from sorbet to lamb.
Anise hyssop has a warming stimulating action that clears heat. It supports the the lungs, digestive system and spleen. Historically it has been used for bloating, nausea, gas, indigestion, vomiting and diarrhea. It can be added in a respiratory formula for flu, fever, colds, asthma, bronchitis and sore throat. The aerial parts can be used in a poultice to be applied externally for migraine, heatstroke, sore, fungal infections, bruises, bug bites, and burns.
Parts used:Flowers and Leaves
Energetics:pungent, sweet, warm, dry
Contraindications: None, can be used regularly as a “tonic”or in culinary dishes. Anise hyssop has the same medicinal uses as Hyssopus officinalis but different essential oils and constituents. Hyssopus is much stronger and should not be taken in large doses or in the long term as medicine.