Tri-City Ledger -

By Carolyn Bivins
Guest Writer 

Tips and recipes on how to get the best of figs

 

July 25, 2019



Got Figs?

Both Mrs. Frances Rallings and Johnny Hall of Brewton do!

They have an abundance of figs on their trees this year. Johnny plans to have his first canning experience making Strawberry Fig Preserves and Mrs. Rallings will continue treating her family members to an old family recipe for Fig Newtons. They love receiving homemade batches of cookies in the mail. I’m really impressed!

For health conscious people, figs are one of the most highly sought fruits in the United States.

Research has shown figs to be a good source of dietary fiber, potassium, vitamin B6, and manganese. Figs are versatile fruits and can be eaten fresh, frozen, pickled or added to cereals, and more. But most figs are eaten dried. Dried figs contain large amounts of sugar, calcium and iron.

Bakers use figs to make fig bars and fig newton. Figs were believed to be the favorite fruit of Queen Cleopatra, and they still occupy a very important place in many cultures around the world.

Romans were the avid lovers of the fruit and considered it as a gift from the fertility God ‘Bacchus’. Hmm-m.

The following are some Health and Nutritional Benefits of Eating Figs from the Lifestyle Lounge:

Health & Fitness:

The rich potassium content of figs helps to maintain the blood pressure of the body.

Figs are rich in dietary fiber, which makes them very effective for weight management program.

Even leaves of the fig plant have healing properties. Eating fig leaves helps diabetic patients reduce the amount of insulin intake.

Calcium and potassium present in figs prevent bone thinning and help to promote bone density.

Tryptophan, present in figs, induces good sleep and helps get rid of sleeping disorders like insomnia.

Eating figs relieves fatigue and boosts memory power.

Drinking fig juice helps to soothe irritated bronchial passages.

Consumption of figs with milk cures illness like anemia.

Due to their laxative effect, figs are helpful for treating chronic constipation.

Daily consumption of soaked figs (2-3) is an effective remedy for curing hemorrhoids or piles.

The soluble fiber, called pectin, in figs helps in reducing blood cholesterol.

When applied on skin, baked figs can cure inflammations like abscesses and boils.

Due to their high water content, mashed figs act as a very good skin cleanser and help in preventing and curing acnes and pimples.

Figs are rich in calcium and are excellent calcium alternatives for people who are allergic to dairy products.

Consuming figs also helps in aiding digestion and taming various stomach and bowel-related problems.

Figs promote the overall well-being of an individual and are excellent aphrodisiacs.

Source: Lifestyle Lounge: Health & Fitness

We have a wonderful free FIGS recipe pamphlet that you can request from our office.

Call (251) 867-7760 and request us to send you a copy. Below are two of our favorite fig recipes. They are easy to make.

Enjoy!

Strawberry Fig Preserves

• 2 quarts figs (8 cups)   • 3 cups sugar

• 2 packages strawberry gelatin (3 ounces each)

Wash, peel and mash figs. Measure 3 cups mashed figs into a large, thick-bottom saucepan.

Add gelatin and sugar and heat to a boil. Lower heat and boil slowly for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring often.

Fill hot jars immediately with fig mixture, leaving a 1/ 4-inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe jar rims and adjust lids. Process in a boiling water-bath canner. Half-pints, 5 minutes

Dark Chocolate Covered Figs

This recipe is as easy as one-two-three. Just grab these three ingredients to make this fresh vegan treat and cure your chocolate craving.

Dark chocolate contains flavonoids that come from extracts of the cocoa bean. Choosing dark chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa gives your family more of these healthy antioxidants.

Some studies report small portions of dark chocolate can maintain heart health and the health of blood vessels.

Ingredients

• ½ cup dark chocolate chips (without milk fat as ingredient) 

• 12 fresh Black Mission figs 

• ¼ cup finely chopped raw walnuts

Directions

1. Melt chocolate in double boiler or microwave.

2. Dip figs into melted chocolate, sprinkle with nuts and place on parchment-lined pan.

3. Refrigerate about 30 minutes, until chocolate and nuts are set and figs are cold.

Nutrition Information: Serving size: 1 fig, Serves 12

Calories: 80; Total fat: 4g; Saturated fat: 1.5g; Trans fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 0mg; Total carbohydrate: 13g; Dietary fiber: 2g; Sugars: 10g; Protein: 1g.

Source: Dawn Jackson Blatner, RDN, CSSD, is a registered dietitian nutritionist and author.

 
 

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