Figlicious is a family owned farm specialising in gourmet figs. Having traded at the Carriageworks Farmers Market for the past few years, you can find their stall weekly at our market during fig season.
We had a chat with Grower Gebran Azzi who shared his rich Lebanese family history and how his father and uncle were pioneers in the Australian food scene introducing the much-loved cooking staple – the Lebanese Cucumber. Read the full interview below.
Can you tell us about Figlicious?
We are a family owned farm, specialising in gourmet figs. Our figs are grown to ripen on the tree which gives them the ultimate sweet fig taste experience.
How did Figlicious begin?
My parents were forced to leave their homeland in Lebanon during the civil war and we were accepted as refugees in Australia. Not knowing the language and having a young family, my father was forced to go back to farming. He and his brother introduced Lebanese Cucumbers into Australia around 1984 and were pioneers in the greenhouse industry.
Once they retired, we had many hot houses vacant and having been a property valuer for over 10 years, I went back to farming. I researched the way figs were grown abroad, especially in Japan and adopted the techniques here, which has grown into what Figlicious is today. I’ve now been in the fig farming business for 15 years.
What does an average day look like for you?
The average day for me is waking up at sunrise and harvesting the fruit from the trees, which has to be done daily. Then I have to package them and grade them into sizes. This also includes maintaining the farm and ensuring the trees are watered and happy, which is hard on hot days. On weekends I attend markets including the Carriageworks Farmers Market and sell at our farm door outlet.
Can you tell us about the farming process?
Figs are a deciduous tree, so they go to sleep during winter. During this time, the pruning and cleaning happens to ensure the trees have new growth in spring. This is also the time we replant trees if need be.
Our business is a family orientated business, and we all help out, which is one of the reasons I chose this lifestyle.
What is your favourite fig recipes?
My favourite fig recipe is just a simple fig salad, made with rocket, parmesan cheese and caramelised balsamic vinegar.
There are lots more fig recipes to try on the Carriageworks Farmers Market recipe page including:
Make sure to visit Figlicious next time you’re at the Carriageworks Farmers Market. Open from 8am – 1pm, every Saturday.