What is Fig Juice?
Fig juice is the liquid extract from the fig fruit. This juice can be extracted from both fresh and dried figs. The fig fruit is small and bell-shaped with a lot of minute edible seeds that give it a unique texture. Ripe figs have a purple or reddish-brown color.
- Fig juice has a very sweet taste and is suitable for juice blends, desserts, and confits.
- Black Mission figs are most commonly used for preparing fig juice.
There are five main fig varieties from which juice can be extracted:
- Adriatic Fig
- Black Mission Fig
- Brown Turkey Fig
- Calimyrna Fig
- Kadota Fig
Figs were often used to sweeten food before sugar became easily accessible and affordable. Figs and its juice were used in ancient India in Ayurvedic medicine for a variety of ailments. It is even believed that Buddha sat under a fig tree when he received enlightenment. Figs are also mentioned in the Bible and some scholars think that the forbidden fruit of Eden refers to figs, not apples.
Additionally, figs have long been used in traditional Chinese medicine, which classifies them as a balanced yin and yang food item. Figs were a key component of the Mediterranean diet and the Anatolian king, Mithridates, proclaimed them a health tonic. The fig tree has been cultivated for more than 5,000 years, although there is archaeological evidence that wild figs have been growing for 60 million years.
This fruit juice is a nutrient-dense and energy-rich drink. A 100g serving of fig juice contains:
Unlike most juices, it has a high amount of fiber. It also has micronutrients such as vitamins A & C, iron, calcium, manganese, and magnesium. This is also high in antioxidants and research suggests that consumption of figs can delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
In addition, fig juice can be used for easing constipation and insomnia, as well as for helping in healing and preventing respiratory infections, gallstones, and eye problems. However, overconsumption may lead to side effects such as nausea, vomiting, and stomach cramps. Figs are a relatively common allergen and diabetic people must avoid consuming too much of this fruit juice.
Fig juice is produced commercially like any other fruit juice. First, juicy figs are selected and sent in for washing. These are then transported to a pressing machine to extract the juice. The juice may be sent on to pasteurization and bottling or may undergo further processing to make juice concentrates and powders.
Fig juice recipes
This fruit juice can sweeten any dish without sugar. Here are a few popular recipes:
- Fig Juice
- Fig Syrup
- Fig Ice Cream
- Apple and Fig Cake
- Lemon Frosted Fig Bars
- Fig Cashew Rolls
- Fig Cake
The FDA regulates all fruit juices, including fig juice and juice concentrates. The FDA defines fruit juice as any beverage that contains any amount of juice derived from fruits. Companies are required to specify the exact amount of juice present in their products. Fig juice must have at least an 18.2 percent concentration of juice.
Armstrong, W.P., Ancient Figs Of The Holy Land, Wayne’s World, An Online Textbook of Natural History, https://www2.palomar.edu/users/warmstrong/ww0501.htm
Subash, Selvaraju et al. “Chronic dietary supplementation of 4% figs on the modification of oxidative stress in Alzheimer’s disease transgenic mouse model.” BioMed research international vol. 2014 (2014): 546357. doi:10.1155/2014/546357, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4090508/