Eating in with Ian Greer: Plum crazy for the new season’s fruit

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Czar, Victoria and Early Rivers are some of the great names of varieties of plum and over the next few weeks the fruit shops and markets should be full of this delightful fruit

Czar, Victoria and Early Rivers are some of the great names of varieties of plum and over the next few weeks the fruit shops and markets should be full of this delightful fruit

It’s said that the knights returning from the Crusades brought sapling plum trees back from Damascus and are to be credited with the arrival of plums into Europe.

On drying, the fruits can be kept and used in a variety of culinary preparations and of course we all must know the benefit of eating prunes! Now here’s a simple plum dessert for you to try and benefit from…

Plum tart tatin

8-10 firm plums, cut in half and stoned

200g/ ½lb sweet/puff pastry

125g/5oz caster sugar

75g/3oz unsalted butter

Method

Melt the butter in a 10-inch shallow, ovenproof pan or iron omelette pan and remove from the heat.

Evenly sprinkle the sugar on to this.

Place the prepared plums cut side down into the base of the pan and place onto a moderate heat until the sugar caramellises (approx 15mins), remove from the heat and cool.

Pour off any juice (retain for serving) and ensure that the plums are firmly in place at the bottom of the pan. Roll out the pastry and place over the plums, ensuring that you tuck in the edges.

Make a small hole in the middle of the pastry and put the pan into a pre-heated oven (200C/400F) for approx 35 minutes.

Remove from the oven, allow to cool slightly and invert the pan on to a plate to turn it out.

Serve with ice cream and some of the juice.