These are one of my favorite fall fruits and often a misunderstood one. These are blue plums. I’ve also heard of them being called Italian blue plums or prune plums. We usually dry some, and technically make prunes, but these are nothing like any prunes I’ve ever had before so we usually just refer to them as dried plums. They’re addictive and delicious, just like the fresh fruit.
I’ve seen many people online saying that they’re no good for eating, that they’re far too sour, but that is not the case when they’re ready. When these are ready there should be no sign of red, or maybe just a tiny little bit of red barely visible through their blue color, if you like them slightly sour. They should be firm to the touch. If they’re soft and wrinkly I’m afraid I consider those too far gone(unless you want to dry them or make fruit leather out of them), but they’ll be super sweet at that point if you do try them.
I’ve found many things to do with them, but since the season is pretty much over for our area I think I’ll just have time for this one recipe. Although I do also freeze them so I’m sure I’ll be making plum recipes out of season too. This is one of our favorite recipes for using up these plums, and if you have a tree(or a friend or neighbor with a tree) you’ll know that this recipe wont even make a dent in your plum supply, but it’s a yummy way to use a few up.
- 1 1/4C whole wheat pastry flour(from soft wheat)
- 1/3C ground walnuts(or any other nuts – substitute ground oats in case of nut allergies)
- 3/4C sucanat or palm sugar or just light brown sugar, divided
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp cardamom
- 1/2C salted butter, melted and cooled
- 8-10C plums(about 3 lbs), pitted and quartered
- 2-3 tbsp whole grain flour
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease an 8×8 baking dish and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, ground nuts or oats, 1/2C of the sugar and the spices. Drizzle in the cooled melted butter and mix together with a fork until crumbly. Break up the crumbs so that none are bigger than 1″ as they wont cook in the middle.
Prepare the fruit by pitting and cutting the plums into quarters. Mix together with 1/4C sugar and 2-3 tbsp flour depending on how juicy they are. Toss well to combine, then place in the bottom of the pan, slightly heaped in the middle and top with the crumble mixture. Bake at 375 degrees for 50-55 minutes until the fruit is bubbly and the top is golden.