P is for Plums…and lots of them

plum jam || cityhippyfarmgirl

plum crumble

When a surprise box of plums comes home, there is a tiny pause then a lovely mixture of excitement and ooooh, what am I going to do with them all!

Despite my fervent wishing I still don’t have a walk in pantry, with darkened rustic wooden shelves of assorted heights to store all my preserved goodies on. On the other side of the pantry, I also don’t have a long fermenting bench where I can store all of my current fermenting goodness. What I did have was a box of plums that needed sorting asap, a crowded bench top for fermenting and a small portion of a dresser cupboard to store things in.

I also had enthusiasm, and that should never be underestimated.

So what was to be made with that of box plums?

plum mead || cityhippyfarmgirl

Plum Crumble

Plum Jam

Chilli Plum Sauce

and the most exciting of them all

Plum Honey Mead

Plum Honey Mead was such a great experiment. The picture here is of the mixture at 24 hours old. Already it’s started to bubble a little, which only increased- and almost volcanically. I was happily telling anyone that paused for longer than thirty seconds beside me, (which can be awkward at pedestrian crossings and other generally non chatty public places.) More to come on this intriguing stuff, so in the mean time how about a Chilli Plum Sauce Recipe? Dead easy and surprisingly versatile in what you can smother things with.

chilli plum sauce || cityhippyfarmgirl

Chilli Plum Sauce

8 plums washed, stoned and quartered

100g fresh chilli

1 medium brown onion

4 cloves of garlic

2 cups (420g) brown sugar

1 1/2 cups (375mls) white vinegar

2 tsp salt

Process plums, chilli, onion, garlic together in a blender and then into a pot. Add the sugar, salt and vinegar and bring to a gentle simmer. Keep it at this level until the sauce thickens. Pop into a clean glass jar and keep in the fridge, (or alternatively process and store as you would jam.)

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And to the winner of the little giveaway- Congratulations Zena from Twigs and Twine, I will be in touch shortly to get your address.

As for everyone else that took the time to comment on this post. I have to say, I feel so honoured to be a part of this online community. I know time is precious and there are thousands of incredibly interesting things to be looking at on the internet these days- so taking the time to comment here means a lot.

I also found it so interesting in hearing about what community meant to different people. I think in asking the question, it’s just confirmed things even more for me. Connectedness and a sense of belonging within a community (of any sort) is so incredibly important and so many of us within this small online space here- value that.

As I send virtual loaves of sourdough and little plates of biscuits to you all- again thank you. You all rock. 

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the kitchen fairy

In the black of the night,

the kitchen fairy is up.

Sleep hides from her, skulking like a shadow, somewhere near by, but not close enough.

Tiptoed footsteps to the kitchen, careful to avoid the creaks in the floorboards.

outside is silence, the black of night is at its most silent.

The household sleeps on,

as the kitchen fairy begins to weigh and chop. Silent in her cutting and quartering.

her thoughts scamper from one to another, but even they eventually stop and pause, once the rhythm of cooking has taken over.

A match is struck, pots turned on.

Her breath held, while a pot lid slips from her grasp. She needn’t worry, the household slumbers on.

With the smells of plums and vanilla teasing the sleeping nostrils, she knows only good dreams can come of that.

Outside, the night continues on in black.

The kitchen fairy’s eyes grow weary,

sleep has stepped out of her shadows, beckoning to her once again.

The pots are turned off, her work now is done.

The slowly greying dawn will show lined jars of vivid plum jam, and cooling racks of sourdough bread,

time for the kitchen fairy to rest.

Plum Jam

2.3 kilos of plums

500mls water

2 kilos of sugar

juice of 1 lime

Plums Plums Plums….

 

What to do with a huge box of plums destined for the garbage as considered too ripe? Bring them home and make…

Plum Jam– not quite the same without the vanilla bean, but certainly passed the family test. My 18month old opened his mouth like a little bird, “more, more”.

Plum Crumble– the humble crumble is a staple in our household. Even though its been a regular on my cooking list for a really long time it still is a favourite. So versatile, use what ever you have got as long as some kind of fruit and butter goes in everything else is interchangeable.

Plum BBQ Sauce– not sure about this one yet, I haven’t made it before. The sort of thing you taste, let it roll around on your tongue a little, swallow and then you are still not sure so you try it again…

Plums stewed– straight into the freezer for another time.

Plum puree– also in to the freezer for food colour of a birthday cake at some stage.

I do get a certain sense of satisfaction making all these things from something that was just going to be tossed out. If I could only get more jars I would be making pots and pots more of jam. It is such a good thing to store in a cupboard or for a little present for someone.