While figs are available most of the year from around the world, they tend to be a rather expensive delicacy. However, September is the time to take advantage of the huge supply of Black Bursa figs from Turkey.
Bursa figs are wonderful fruit, especially when they are perfectly mature: plump, soft, sweet and full of flavour, so don’t miss-out!
It is often quite difficult to choose and buy the best quality of Bursa fig because most stores sell figs in enclosed punnets. To really know which are most tasty, you need to gently touch the fruit, so it is best to buy them loose if you can. Fortunately, it is possible to by Bursa figs loose in many retailers, though they can be more expensive because of the potential waste caused by careless handling. To select, touch the fruit very gently and feel whether they are velvety tender for perfect ripeness or have a cooler hardness to the skin indicating slightly less maturity.
Perfectly ripe figs will not store for long, so need to eaten within a day or two, which is no real hardship! The slightly harder fruit may soften a bit in the fruit bowl, but only if they are very well coloured. Bursa figs that have that slight hardness and have patches of pale green, will not have the best eating quality. Remember that these fruit are very delicate, so touch and handle carefully.
Buying figs in punnets of 4 or 6 fruit will be cheaper, but these are obviously untouchable. With these, take care to choose the figs with good, even, dark colouration to give the best chance of success. Bursa figs with patches of green or pale skin are immature to varying degrees, and may not develop into full ripeness. The shape of the fig is another indicator, as they have a rounded plumpness when mature rather than a slightly slender appearance.
This week, prices vary tremendously in supermarkets, from 25p to 62p each. The cheapest are in Morrisons and Tesco at 25p each, 4 or 6 fruit pre-packed, while the cheapest loose fruit are in Lidl at 39p each.
©Good Fruit Guide 2017. Information and data published on www.goodfruitguide.co.uk must not be reproduced or copied without permission of the editor. Recommendations on fruit varieties and types with the very best taste are personal to the editor of Good Fruit Guide, and do not attempt to be exhaustive or supported by verifiable consumer research. The highlighting of fruit with the very best taste in the opinion of the editor is not intended as a judgement on the taste of varieties and types of fruit not mentioned.