Saturday, April 7
Things to do with plums
Plums are juicy and can be eaten fresh, made into jam or used in baking. Dried plums are known as prunes, and are usually sweet and juicy and contain several antioxidants. Plums or prunes are a great lunch box item. Both plums and prunes are known for having a laxitive effect.
I have been thinking a lot about plums recently as I want to plant a plum tree in our garden. After puzzling over which type to plant, I think I have settled on a Santa Rosa because they are somewhat self-fertile. Many other plum varieties require another tree for fertilisation.
I want a plum tree so that one day I can make home-made plum jam. The other day I made some using a kg of Omega plums from the supermarket and a kg of jam setting sugar. This made a sweet and sour jam with almost a jelly consistency. I roughly followed the Chelsea jam setting sugar recipe (which could be used with many other fruits):
1 kg plums, stoned
1 kg jam setting sugar
15 g butter
Sterilise five to six medium jars. I boiled mine on the stove top then using tongs I transferred them to a hot oven to dry and keep warm.
In a food processor, or with a stick blender roughly pulp the fruit. Add plums and sugar to a large heavy based pan or preserving pan. Warm over a low heat and dissolve the sugar. Once the sugar is dissolved, add the butter.
Bring fruit to a boil. Skim off foam as it rises to the surface. After approximately five minutes check to see if jam is ready to set. You can do this by putting a blob onto the cold plate (i put the plate in the freezer), if you run your finger through this and the surface wrinkles and does not run or bleed the jam is likely to be ready. Keep boiling until the jam passes the set test.
Transfer jam into the sterilised jars, seal with lids and label. Spread liberally on toast. Enjoy.