This year it was warm long enough for a second fig harvest! My November figs are slightly smaller and slightly less sweet than this year’s summer figs. The leaves of my tree have almost all fallen and the figs look like Christmas baubles on a bare tree. Because figs get moldy so quickly, I always freeze part of my harvest to use later. One of my easiest recipes with this frozen fruit is fig shaved ice with fig syrup. It is a beautiful, tasty sweet dessert to make and all you need is figs, sugar, lemon juice and water! You can even make it easier and skip the fig syrup. Eat it as it is or drizzle some honey mixed with lemon over the top. Some vegans prefer not to eat figs because some fig trees are pollinated by wasps that do not survive the process. Fortunately, most fig trees (including mine!) are self-pollinators, so this ice cream is completely vegan.
Fig shaved ice with fig syrup
Serves 2-3 people
10-12 ripe large figs + extra figs sliced for decoration
250 g / 8 oz / 6-7 ripe figs, cut into pieces
juice and zest of 1 large (organic) lemon
± 200 grams / 1 cup sugar
For the ice cream, put the 10-12 large figs in the freezer and let them freeze solid for 4-5 hours. Also put the serving bowls plus an extra bowl for every serving bowl in the freezer
In the meantime, place the figs with the lemon juice and zest in a pan and add 150 ml / ⅔ cups of water. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 30 minutes until the figs are almost falling apart.
Line a sieve with a well-rinsed tea towel or cheesecloth. Pour in the fig mixture and leave to drain. You can store the contents of the tea towel in the refrigerator for ± 3 days and use it as a fruity spread on bread or toast.
Measure the drained liquid and place in a saucepan. Measure an equal amount of sugar and add to the pan. Heat, stirring regularly, until the sugar has dissolved. Let cool completely and store in the fridge until ready to use. The syrup will keep for 3-4 weeks in the fridge.
Grate the frozen figs with a very fine grater (I use a fine microplane) into the bowls. Place each bowl back in the freezer as soon as you are done with it. Fill double the number of bowls you want to serve. Store in the freezer for up to ± 2 hours before serving. If you freeze them longer they will loose their fluffy lightness. Just before serving, tip the extra bowls over the serving bowls to make nice round mounds of fig shaved ice. Decorate with the extra figs and serve with the fig syrup.