There were punnets full of beautiful yellow plums at the supermarket this week and although I had no clue what to do with them I had to buy some - they just looked so bright, golden and sunny! It was so wet, cold and dull outside that a bit of brightness was really welcome and I wanted a little bit of that....
When I got the shopping home, I removed them from the plastic punnet and into a decorative basket, placed them in a bowl on the kitchen table and waited for inspiration to strike....
They looked a bit sharp in flavour so I decided that waiting for them to ripen to eat or making them into any sort of fruit pie or crumble was probably out - it would require too much sugar - so a fruit preserve such as a chutney, compote or jam was probably the way to go.
I opted for a compote - less sugar and it will go with puddings, cheese or cold meats - giving us lots of options for eating it up......
recipe - enough to make up 1 jar
1 punnet of plums - about 6 plums
4 tablespoons sugar - white, granulated.
juice half a lemon
1 teaspoon vanilla paste
Wash the plums and half them, remove the stones and then half again - so you have lots of plum quaters.
Arrange in a heavy based, shallow pan, cut sides up.
Add the sugar and the lemon juice - place over a low heat. No extra water is required. Most of the sugar will dissolve in the lemon juice and then the rest will melt with the heat. Bring the pan to a gentle simmer and cover with a lid or some foil. Allow the plums to poach until soft - about 5-7 minutes.
Once the plums have softened - but still have their shape - remove them from the liquid and spoon into a sterilised jar - a 370g Bonne Marie jam jar is perfect size.
Pour the hot syrup over the plums, cover and allow to cool before screwing on the lid.
The compote will keep in the fridge for ages - you can serve it with rice pudding, on pancakes, with french toast croissants / brioche, or with cheeses and cold meats. It's especially good with a warmed brie.
Have fun today