This week in addition to our regular bountiful basket we ordered the Plummy Paradise Sampler pack. I’ve been excited about this ever since. My initial plan was plum jelly. That still may happen, but since then I picked currants and made 3 plus quarts of juice for jelly, some currant jelly, and some raspberry currant jelly. So I’m a bit jellied out. I’m not sure what varieties we will end up with either. I found this nice guide to plum varieties.
I decided rather than jelly, my first project with some of the plums will be plum BBQ sauce. The recipe that I think I will stick to fairly closely other than doubling is from the Ball Blue Book. What a treasure that book is. Bonus with this recipe is I can use my food processor too!Plum Sauce – from Ball Blue Book Yield: about 4 pints 4 pounds of plums (I used closer to 4.5) 2 cups brown sugar3/4 cup chopped onion 2 T mustard seed (I might add a bit of dried mustard too) 2 T chopped green chili pepper 1 piece fresh ginger (generous) 1 T salt 3 clove garlic, minced 1 cup cider vinegar Wash plums; drain. Pit and chop plums. Combine remaining ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat. Add chopped plums. Cook until thick and syrupy. Ladle hot sauce into jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Adjust 2 piece caps. Process 20 minutes in a boiling-water canner.The plums came. Twelve pounds of plums is quite a bit more than I imagined. The variety possibilities were on the side of the package. I thought I’d try to match them up and see what was there, but I really didn’t. I just took the plums that were ripe or close to it which totaled 5 pounds and set the rest aside to ripen. I didn’t take many process pictures because it was already dark in my kitchen at 8:30 pm when I started this project. I used my new friend the food processor to chop the garlic, ginger and onion first. Then started simmering that with the other ingredients while I de-pitted the plums. I then chopped the plums with the skin on in the food processor and dumped then in to the simmering sauce each time I filled the food processor bowl.
I ladled out some of the big chunks of plum and processed them some more (immersion blender would be handy here). And simmered and simmered.
Then I ladled into jars, put on the two piece lids. I’m loving my tattler reusable lids. I do some with the regular lids in case I want to gift some of the sauce. I hate to tell people they have to bring the lid back. But the thought of not having to throw away the metal lid each time is fabulous. Plus lids get reasonably expensive. The reusable ones were roughly $50 for three dozen wide and three dozen narrow. So about .70 per lid. Ball lids are roughly .35 for narrow and .45 for wide. Perhaps I could get them for less on sale, but those are the amazon prices. So, I really only have to use the reusable twice to break even