Fig Jam


        2 Ibs. dried figs
        3 cups sugar
        3 cups water
        1 Tbsp. Iemon juice
        1 1/2 tsp. powdered anise seed
        1 1/2 Tbsp. roasted sesame seeds
        1/4 tsp. powdered mustikah (gum arabic)
        1/4 cup pine kernels
        1/2 to 1 cup walnuts
This delicious and nourishing jam will keep for several months, unsealed, in a cool place. The figs are preserved in the fall when the fruit is in its prime and the jam is relished by Lebanese villagers as a spread for bread, as a pudding or just as a sweet.

Cut the dried figs in small pieces. Dissolve sugar in water and bring to a full boil. Skim off the foam. Add lemon juice. Place figs in the syrup and boil together on a medium flame. Gradually increase the flame, stirring mixture constantly to avoid burning. Add walnuts, pine nuts, sesame seeds and anise seeds and cook on low fire for five minutes stirring constantly. Remove from fire. Stir in mustikah. Pour into jars. Decorate tops with walnut halves which have been lightly toasted.

(From Food from the Arab World Marie Karam Khayat and Margaret Clark Keatinge, Khayat's, Beirut 1959)