Every summer I get impatient waiting for fig season. This year, with high temperatures and drought conditions, it seems unlikely that we'll get them at all. But thanks to the dried version, I can get my fig fix in liquid form anytime I like.
Buy a pound of your favorite variety of dried figs from a store like Whole Foods (I've used both Black Mission figs and golden Turkish), chop them in quarters, and add one 750 ml bottle of vodka. Cover, refrigerate, and begin to check the flavor after 3 to 4 days. You want the vodka to smell and taste like figs, but still retain a little bite. However, if you let it sit too long and it gets too sweet and fruity, just mix in some plain vodka to taste. When the vodka infusion is complete, strain it and rebottle it. We store ours in the refrigerator.
You can mix it with club soda (try muddling some fresh tarragon with the vodka first, then strain it and top it with 2--3 ounces of soda) or try this cocktail my husband created, perfect for steamy days and nights.
1 1/2 ounces fig vodka
1 ounce fresh orange juice
1/2 ounce John Taylor's Velvet Falernum
2 dashes Angostura bitters
2-3 ounces club soda
Place all ingredients in a cocktail glass (adding soda last). Add ice, stir. Garnish with a skewered fig half (if available) or an orange twist.