I need some plum good ideas.
August 20, 2018 11:54 AM   Subscribe

We have plums. Lots of plums. My husband and I are the new owners of a fabulous and prolific golden plum tree. We have plums coming out of our ears this week. We can only eat and barter and give away just so many. We still have, probably, a couple hundred more pounds.

We are dealing with them by freezing and canning, 'cuz they won’t last long. Plum halves, plum juice, plum purée. You get the idea. We have also sugared and dried a bunch.

What shall I do with this bounty? Jam and jelly are already on the list for as soon as the rush is over, and Mr. SLC will be making plum wine.

What else, hive mind?
posted by SLC Mom to Food & Drink (25 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Mmm, the classic plum torte from NY Times? Can sub lots of fruits for the plums, so sure you'll be golden (sorry, couldn't resist!) if you don't use purple plums.
posted by stillmoving at 11:57 AM on August 20, 2018 [2 favorites]

Plum butter maybe?
posted by Knicke at 12:00 PM on August 20, 2018 [1 favorite]

posted by aniola at 12:00 PM on August 20, 2018 [1 favorite]

posted by humboldt32 at 12:01 PM on August 20, 2018 [1 favorite]

Whoops, I see you have those covered. Umeboshi?!
posted by aniola at 12:02 PM on August 20, 2018

posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 12:03 PM on August 20, 2018

Plum rosemary upside-down cake!

Preheat oven to 350F. Melt a stick of butter in a 9-inch cake pan. Pour half into a bowl. Sprinkle 1/2c dark brown sugar into the remaining butter in the cake pan. Sprinkle a teaspoon of minced fresh rosemary atop the sugar. Take about 5 or 6 plums and halve them (if small) or cut them into chunks (if large) and arrange across the pan's bottom.

Whisk the remaining butter with two eggs, a cup of buttermilk, and 1/2c granulated sugar until foamy. In a separate bowl, combine 2c flour, 1tsp baking soda, and a pinch of salt. Add wet to dry (gradually) and stir until a fluffy batter forms. Smooth batter over plums and bake for about an hour. Let cool for five minutes, then flip cake over onto serving plate.
posted by halation at 12:04 PM on August 20, 2018 [3 favorites]

Is there a local harvest or food bank that will accept/pick your fruit? Fresh, local fruit can be a real treat for people who otherwise get cans or prepared foods.
posted by five_cents at 12:06 PM on August 20, 2018 [9 favorites]

Also, golden plum liqueur is fabulous. Distilling is probably a bit too complex, but you might try making a nice plum brandy.
posted by halation at 12:06 PM on August 20, 2018 [3 favorites]

That Marian Burros recipe stillmoving links is a classic for a reason, yes! Very easy and always delicious.

I also love these two recipes (the peach tart one, I've used plums instead, along with rosemary-rubbed sugar to complement, to good effect...don't overstack/use too many plums in it or it will be too watery):
-super easy (no rolling or electric gadgets or ice water or sifting or blind baking or nothin'!) tart (the crust is a tad crumbly in a good way, a bit like if a pecan sandies cookie and shortbread mated--you put a forkful of tart in your mouth and the crust crumbles and melts on your tongue...the comments about how you have to eat it quickly because as it sits overnight the bottom crust sort of disappears are true)
-this thing that's like a tart crossed with a fancy pizza lunchtime snack, delicious and unusual (it can be prepped entirely beforehand and then assembled last minute, and it’s best room temp)

also, Deborah Madison has a plum orange blossom "soup" in Vegetarian Cooking For Everyone that's both gorgeous and delicious, and perfect for the hottest days of summer.
posted by ifjuly at 12:08 PM on August 20, 2018

some other ideas:

Mark Bittman got me into grilling or broiling plum halves and serving with rosemary-rubbed steak.

There are a lot of summer salads that use plums and/or peaches in a vaguely caprese-ish way (and similarly, sometimes grilled and then used as bruschetta topping with something like ricotta and basil), or otherwise.
posted by ifjuly at 12:13 PM on August 20, 2018 [1 favorite]

Oh! We made these grilled 5 spice chicken + plum kabobs a few weeks ago and they were wayyyyyy better than the sum of their parts. Delicious.
posted by Knicke at 12:39 PM on August 20, 2018

Plum wine, here's the first recipe I found. It takes a lot of kit so if you don't have it you could donate some plums to a wine or beer maker.
posted by Botanizer at 12:51 PM on August 20, 2018

Dried plums* are so good.

Formerly known as "prunes"
posted by vespabelle at 1:13 PM on August 20, 2018

Do you have a local crop swap, or could you barter with a local social-media group?

If you know someone who does home beer brewing, they could make a lambic or a sour.
posted by expialidocious at 2:16 PM on August 20, 2018

Far Breton! One of my favourite French desserts. It's kind of clafoutis-ish.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 3:26 PM on August 20, 2018 [1 favorite]

You should look into your local Buy Nothing group and get to know your neighbors! Plenty of folks will help you out there and would be happy to be gifted such a generous gift :) Also yes, the food pantry stuff is really real, food insecurity is crucial and fresh produce does not get given enough to them. Food Not Bombs is another one

For recipes, try making hua mei then pulverize it into a powder and then use it on everything like the Hawaiians do, like margaritas.
posted by yueliang at 4:03 PM on August 20, 2018

Fruit leathers— that’s a classic, fairly easy way to preserve a hundred pounds of fruit or so withnfairly low effort per pound.

Like sure make a cake etc but you have over a HUNDRED pounds of food that will go bad within 10 days, so you gotta look for low effort preservation and donation if you don’t want to waste.
posted by SaltySalticid at 5:57 PM on August 20, 2018 [1 favorite]

Also Umeboshi, the salty sour pickled Japanese plum technique.
posted by SaltySalticid at 6:13 PM on August 20, 2018

I came here to say plum butter as well. Here's a hands-off slow cooker recipe. You can squeeze more poundage of plums in there, it'll just take longer to cook down. I can fit about 10 pounds of fruit in my crockpot.
posted by desuetude at 7:10 AM on August 21, 2018

I acquired a Thekla steam juicer a couple years ago at a yard sale and I will never make jelly again without one, it really speeds up the process.
posted by Mary Ellen Carter at 11:25 AM on August 21, 2018

When you make that jelly, try adding jalepeño to some of it. Amazing.
posted by nenequesadilla at 7:36 PM on August 21, 2018

Steam juicers are great! We’ve used ours to make juice and then have turned it into syrup which we’ve canned. Plum syrup is amazing-very flavorful. Great added to soda water or in cocktails. We have also added to apples to make plum applesauce. (Source-people with five or six freaking plum trees).
posted by purenitrous at 8:31 PM on August 21, 2018

Thanks everyone. We canned plum purée for future jam and fruit leather, plum juice for future jelly and punch, and quite a bit of plum butter. Also ate a bunch and gave away about 30 pounds to friends, and left a few for the deer.

We are using a steam juicer and I love the idea for plum syrup.

Oh, I also have 2 gallons of plum brandy brewing!

Now we have a neighbor leaving pears and apples on our porch.....
posted by SLC Mom at 7:17 PM on September 16, 2018

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