For Jam: Rinse and drain figs. Clip stems and grind or chop figs fine. Add water, bring to boil and cook and stir about 15 minutes or until water is absorbed. Add sugar, salt and spice. Cook and stir until of thick conserve consistency -- from 7 to 10 minutes.
Sift together flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Work shortening into flour mixture. Add milk and beaten eggs, stir to blend. Divide batter into 12 medium-sized greased muffin tins. With a spoon, make a "well" in top of each muffin. Fill each "well" with spoonful of jam. Bake in hot oven (425 F.) about 18 minutes. Serve hot with butter and remaining jam.
Source: 48 Family Favorites with California Figs Reprinted with the permission of The California Fig Advisory Board Electronic format courtesy of Karen Mintzias