On the way home from a walk, Husband and I stopped at a plum tree growing out of the hedge last night and filled our bag full of beautiful little plums. They are the tiniest things, no bigger than three bites at most, but they are sweet and bright red. I’ve put some out in our fruit bowl to eat as is, but I decided to compote the rest of them. I am cheating a bit, because I am going to freeze the compote instead of canning it, but it works either way.
I had about three pounds of fruit stoned, so I made a simple syrup from three cups of water and three cups of brown sugar and cooked the plums in the syrup for twenty minutes. I probably could have gotten away with less syrup, but my family likes runny compotes, so one cup of syrup to one pound of fruit it is. I also added in a few cloves and a stick of cinnamon for extra flavor. It is sweet, but I generally will not waiver from the sugar ratio in simple syrups or preserving. I’ve let it cool overnight before portioning for freezing, and I won’t be bothered to fish out the spices.
That was it! The best part about this was that Daughter helped me stone the plums, so we had a great time getting dirty fingers. I just cut a slit in the side and she dug out the stone. She wants to do some more, so I’ll probably go back and snag a few from the tree for a plum jelly/jello for the weekend, or maybe a plum batter cake. Incidentally, the compote can be eaten as is or as a topping on pancakes, cake, ice cream, etc.
I love treasures from the hedge!