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Mission Fig Conserve

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A Fig Conserve from Paulding & Company

Paulding & Company is a full catering kitchen based in San Francisco founded by mother-daughter duo Tracy and Terry Paulding. My daughter Ravenna Wilson is also a baker so I know first hand how rewarding and fun it can be to bake with a loved one!  Their goal is to provide memorable culinary experiences through team building sessions in the kitchen and they can also provide space for private parties, rehearsal dinners, and meetings where the guests get to participate and make meals with their chefs. This mission fig conserve recipe is easy and ready to make right now with fresh figs from the farmer’s market. The lemon and sriracha balance out the sweet figs for a conserve that will be just as welcomed spread on toast as it would be alongside a pork chop – Dédé.

I own Paulding & Company, in Emeryville, California. We take large and small groups of people and get them cooking — from corporate team building to adult parties and kids summer camp. I also have a huge Mission fig tree that we planted in the yard about 18 years ago. This year we have been enjoying a bumper crop. Finding things to do with all the figs I can't give away has been fun! I wanted a less-sweet condiment, and combined several products from my yard in this one. The figs, Meyer lemons from my tree, and some of my homemade sriracha sauce, from Aji Lucento peppers, which grow as a perennial here. I've harvested over 200 peppers from my plant this year, and kept family and friends supplied with hot sauce and sriracha.

Mission Fig Conserve

Author: Terry Paulding
Makes: 1 quart


  • 2 pounds Mission figs, stemmed and coarsely diced
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • ½ cup Port (I used a local Merlot Port)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt, or more to taste
  • 1 small Meyer lemon, seeded and finely diced (skin and flesh); or zest and juice of one regular lemon
  • dash of ground cinnamon — not more than 1/8 teaspoon or it will overwhelm the flavors
  • Dash of Sriracha sauce or your favorite hot sauce


  1. Combine figs with remaining ingredients except hot sauce in a non-aluminum, heavy 2-quart pot. Bring to a simmer, and cook until thick, about 15 minutes, on medium heat. Stir frequently to be sure the mixture doesn’t stick. The finished product will be thickly syrupy.

  2. Taste the mixture, and if it needs a bit more lemon juice or salt, add it in, then add the dash of Sriracha sauce at the end. I used my homemade, which is very hot from my home-grown peppers, but commercial should be fine too.

  3. This is a perfect condiment to can, and give as a gift. I filled one-cup canning jars, which I processed in a water bath for 20 minutes. If you don’t take this extra step, just store the conserve in the refrigerator. It should keep for at least a month; there’s not as much sugar in it as a jam, so it won’t last forever.

Author's Tips

  • Purchase a couple of baskets of store-bought Mission figs, if you're not blessed with a tree.
  • Serve with cheese, paté, smoked meats, duck.

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