Since we’ve been in the new house a mysterious friendly neighbour keeps dropping large bags full of plums on our doorstep. I have absolutely no idea where they are coming from but simply consider myself very lucky! With them piling up quickly I thought that I had better do something with them before they take over my fridge! So I looked around for some nice recipes and these are the three I came up with. Plum Pie, Plum Ice Cream & Plum Jam.
I started with the Plum Pie courtesy of James Martin on the BBC Good Food website. I started by making the pastry using a recipe I have previously recommended. Rachel Allen’s shortcrust pastry. I made double the recipe & instead of salt, added sugar to make it sweet as opposed to savoury. When the pastry was chilling in the fridge I started on the filling. Once all the plums were pitted & chopped (which I found to be strangely therapeutic!) I popped them in a pan along with the sugar & ground cloves. I only used half a tsp here as cloves can be very overpowering. When the sugar had dissolved I took a little of the juice and mixed in 1 heaped tsp of corn flour. I then mixed this in thoroughly with the plum filling and removed it from the heat once it was thickened. It was then just a case of putting it all together after that. Once my pie was assembled I put it in a 200°C oven for 30mins.
And this is what came out. I’m glad I only used half a tsp of ground cloves as they are still a very prominent flavour in the pie, any more would have been too much. The overall flavour of the pie is quite satisfying although a little more patience on my part could have avoided it collapsing on me when I tried to remove it from the tin! Oh well, lesson learnt.
Next I moved on to the jam. I went with this recipe from Sally Pasley. I made a much smaller batch than the recipe called for though, here are the quantities I used:
- 855g Plums
- 425g Sugar (I used golden caster)
- 1 lemon, zest & juice
In most cases, making jam is actually a very simple process but you must make sure you follow a few basic rules. Firstly, always use the widest pan possible to allow for maximum evaporation/reduction. Secondly, always use good preserve jars that have been sterilised in the oven to get rid of any bacteria. Thirdly, enjoy it!
After enjoying pitting what felt like a bazzilion plums, I put them in a wide pan along with the lemon (juice & zest) & the sugar. Once the sugar has dissolved, you bring it to a rolling boil & allow to reduce until it’s jellying point. This is easy to test for. Once the jam starts to thicken, pop a plate in the freezer. When you think your jam might be ready, take the plate out the freezer & put a dollop of jam on the plate. Put it back into the freezer for about a minute, then remove the plate and pull your finger through the middle of the jam. (Then lick it, obviously!) If it wrinkles & the gap doesn’t close quickly, your jam has reached its jellying point. After all that, simply pour the jam into the sterilised preserving jar(s), seal the lid, and you’re done!
Plum Ice Cream
This was the one I was looking forward to the most. Ice cream. I mean, who doesn’t love ice cream?? Now there was some stiff competition for which recipe to use but i narrowed it down to this one courtesy of Josie at Pink Parsley. Once again, it’s american measurements. So here are the conversions that I used.
- 450g Plums
- 80ml Water
- 170g Sugar (I used caster)
- 240ml Double cream
- 1 x Lemon, zest & juice
The recipe called for some almond extract or kirsch, but I had a spare lemon so thought I would use that instead. So, back to the pitting again. After chopping all the plums required, I put them in a pan along with the water & the lemon. I covered and cooked for about 8 mins, stirring occasionally. After removing from the heat, I added in the sugar and the cream then blitzed in a blender. Once that was done, I poured the mixture through a sieve to remove any bits and then left to cool for a little while. When the mixture was cool, I poured it into my ice cream maker and left to churn until thick enough to freeze.
I was pleasantly surprised with the results. It’s a very sharp but very flavourful ice cream. I think a scoop of this would go lovely with a scoop of creamy vanilla to cut through the sharpness.
Well that’s it for my kitchen adventures this weekend folks! Hope you enjoyed reading my post. Don’t forget, if you like what you see click on the “sign me up” button at the top of the home page to subscribe to my blog. See you all next week!
Miss Kitchen Mason