“She turned to the sunlight
And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
"Winter is dead.”
~AA Milne, when we were very young
Thursday, 30 July 2009
We have Italian Prune Plum trees right here on the Country Estate that I live and work on. During plum season the trees are just dripping with the purple/blue fruits, hanging off the branches like jewels.
Todd and I both love plums, little purple ones, baby fist sized Italian ones, yellow mirabelles . . . ruby coloured pluots, damsons, green gages . . . we love them all equally . . . they are one of our favourite types of fruit.
The ones here on the Estate are not quite ready yet, but the other day, as we were driving down the A21 towards home, I saw a sign that said, "5 lbs local Kent plums, £1.50," and how could I resist! There is a truck stop food van that parks in one of the layby's near home, and they always have local fruits and flowers advertised. We stopped and picked up a bag. I had in mind to make a lovely Plum Crumble or a tart . . .
It was a lovely bag of plums, just chock full of a variety of different plums, all colours and sizes.
The crumble won out. How could it not? This crumble is especially delicious when made with only Italian Prune Plums, but it's also incredibly moreish with a mixture like I had. We really enjoyed this, warm and sweet from the oven, with those crunchy crumbles on top and a huge dollop of fresh Cornish Clotted Cream . . .
*Fresh Plum Crumble*
I think Plums are one of Todd's and my favourite fruits. Especially during plum season when the trees around here are just dripping with them like little purple jewels. This is one of my favourite ways to prepare them. You get the lovely sweetness of the plums, topped with the sweet and nutty crunch of a delicious streusal. It's just wonderful!
2 pounds pitted and quartered plums
3/4 cup of soft light brown sugar, packed
2 heaped TBS of plain flour
3 TBS of creme de cassis liqueur (If not available you can use fruit juice)
For the Streusal:
3/4 cup plain flour
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup soft light brown sugar, lightly packed
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup rolled oats (not instant oats)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
4 ounces cold butter, cut into cubes
Creme fraiche or clotted cream, for serving
Pre-heat the oven to 190*C/375*F. Combine the fruit, brown sugar, flour and cassis together in a large bowl. Pour the mixture into a shallow baking dish. Set aside.
Measure the flour, white sugar, brown sugar and salt together into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse several times to combine. Add the oats and pultz again. Add the butter bits and pulse until the mixture is crumbly. You want the butter to be the size of peas. Add the walnuts and pulse a couple times just to combine. Sprinkle the streusel evenly over top of the plum mixture in the baking dish. Place on a baking tray to help prevent a nasty spill in your oven!
Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until the plums are bubbling and the streusal is nicely browned. Serve warm or at room temperature, spooned into bowls with a dollop of creme fraiche or clotted cream on top of each. (Or ice cream!)