Many housewives, having collected a rich and generous harvest, begin to think and look for useful information on how to prepare plums for the winter. A huge number of blanks can be prepared from fine plums, we will focus on the most popular, easy and simple recipes that any housewife can cook.
1. Dry (dry) the plum
How to dry plums? A unique prune in the kitchen will always come in handy. Sun-dried plums contain many vitamins, various microelements, and antioxidants. The nutrients contained in the composition prevent the growth of bacteria that cause tooth decay. Such a healthy fruit must be prepared for the winter.
In order for the plum to dry properly and well, select only the ripe fruits that are falling from the tree or are about to fall. Not all varieties are successful for drying; Vengerka and plums with a high content of sucrose and pectin are the most suitable. An important condition for obtaining good prunes is the presence of dense pulp, good bone removal when pressed, the content of pectin and sugar in high quantities.
Healthy plums are selected, bones are removed, then the fruit must be blanched for 1-2 minutes in boiling water, then dipped in cold water and taken out, letting dry a little, remove excess liquid with napkins. To make prunes shiny and dark, plums are soaked in honey syrup (for one part of honey, take two parts of boiling water) for 3-5 minutes.
You can dry it outdoors, in the sun, or use a special dryer, gas or electric oven. To dry in the sun, spread the cream on a tray or baking sheet in one layer, turning occasionally. The time spent in the sunlight is 4-5 days, at night you need to bring it indoors so that the fruit does not get damp. After the dew dries up, put it out again. After the specified time, the prunes need to be removed in the shade to dry for several days (usually 3-4).
When the prune is ready, when pressed, no liquid should be released, it should be elastic, not crumble in your hands. It is customary to add ready-made dried fruits to meat dishes, use for baking, preparing various desserts or spicing salads.
2. Freeze the fruit correctly
Plums can be frozen to enjoy their natural taste in winter or to cook compote according to a recipe, complement a delicious dessert, bake a pie, etc. For freezing, dense varieties are used, with a high percentage of sugar content and a thick peel, where the inner seed is easily separated. Hungarian and Kuban legend showed excellent qualities in freezing, after thawing they retained their natural taste and shape.
The selected cream is thoroughly washed, but not overexposed in water, then dried and the bones are removed by cutting into two parts. Also freeze whole if needed for culinary purposes during the winter. Plums are packed in plastic bags or containers in one layer, sent to the freezer.
After an hour or two, check if the plums have set and hardened, removed for a long freeze, putting the entire plum in bags, plastic containers. If you put all the available plums at once in a bag and freeze, it will be difficult to extract the fruits in winter, as the fruits will easily separate from each other. The storage temperature of the drain in the freezer is -16 ° … -18 ° C, in such conditions the product is stored for up to six months.
3. Cooking plum juice
The recipe for making juice is very easy, and will not cause trouble for novice cooks. All useful elements are preserved in plum juice, including insoluble pectin. To make juice from plums, take 2 kg of fresh fruits, 0.4-0.5 liters of filtered pure water and 100 grams of granulated sugar.
Only ripe and overripe plums are taken, which must be washed and pitted. Put the plum in a saucepan, add water, heat it to a temperature of +75 ° … + 80 ° C. Remove from heat, let stand a little to soften the plums, then wipe the fruit through a sieve or use a juicer.
Pour some water from the pan in which the fruits were in the resulting thick consistency, add granulated sugar and put it on the stove again. We are waiting for the juice to heat up to a temperature of +85 ° C and pour it into a previously prepared container (cans, glass bottles), roll it up. To adjust the richness of the juice, decrease or increase the amount of water as you wish, this will achieve the desired consistency and sweetness.
4. Making delicious plum marshmallow and sweet marmalade
To make plum marshmallows, you will need 1 kg of freshly picked fruits and a little vegetable oil. First, liquid mashed potatoes are cooked by analogy with the recipe for making juice from plums, then it is laid out in a saucepan (but not in an aluminum one) and boiled until the volume is halved.
The mass from the plums is cooled, laid out on baking sheets, trays, etc., having previously covered the bottom of the form with oiled parchment. The layer of mass should not be more than 2 cm. The plum mass packaged in forms is sent to the oven with an internal temperature of +80 ° … + 90 ° С. An important point when cooking marshmallows is the slightly open oven door, otherwise the product at the exit will simply be baked. Approximate recipe cooking time for marshmallow in the oven 3-4 hours.
When the mashed potatoes are thickened enough and no longer stick to your fingers, the plum candy is ready. The finished marshmallow is taken out of the oven, cut into wide strips (along with parchment), put in glass jars and put into the refrigerator for storage.
To make marmalade from plums, you need 1 kg of plum puree and 500-600 grams of sugar. It is better to cook in a saucepan with a thick bottom, in which the mashed potatoes are spread, put on a small heat and stir constantly until the mass stops sticking to the bottom. By this time, during the cooking process, the volume will be reduced by half.
Be sure to taste the resulting mixture until you reach the consistency of a gummy candy. If the puree is still rather stringy and easy to eat, boil until the required viscosity is obtained.
Parchment is lined into the prepared containers, the marmalade is distributed from the plums with a layer of no more than 2 cm, left to cool, dry in a dry room for a couple of days. After 2-3 days, the marmalade will easily separate from the parchment paper, cut into pieces, dip in sugar. You need to store homemade plum marmalade in a closed dry container.
5. Pickled plums - add spice to your dishes
Not every housewife has a pickled plum in the kitchen, this product is not so popular, but in vain. Marinated plums will not only decorate dishes for the festive table, but also give an unusual taste to meat or side dishes.
The recipe will require 5 kg of plums, 1.5 kg of granulated sugar, 250 ml of wine vinegar, 20 g of bay leaves, 10 g of cloves. Ingredients such as ginger, cinnamon, or allspice can be used in the recipe as desired.
Plum is placed in a container in small layers, sprinkling each of them with seasonings. The marinade is prepared separately - 250 ml of wine vinegar is taken, the specified amount of granulated sugar (do not be alarmed by the thick consistency), mixed, put on the flame and languished until the ingredients are completely dissolved and a homogeneous composition is obtained. The resulting hot, almost boiling syrup is poured over the plums. The plums may not completely cover, the plum juice will fill the voids after a while, so do not worry. Leave to cool for a day.
After 24 hours, the plums are carefully separated from the marinade and the procedure is repeated. For the next three days, put on the stove, bring to a boil, then pour again and leave to cool. It is advisable to drain and boil the marinade twice a day (morning and evening), but one is allowed according to the recipe.
After five days, the fruits are laid out in pre-prepared clean jars (necessarily sterilized), spices are added and poured with boiling marinade to the very edge of the jars, corked or rolled up. Pickled plums will not only diversify the festive table, but also become a delicious treat for guests.
6. Cook jam and preserves for the whole family
Delicious plum jam will not only be a great treat for tea on a frosty winter evening, but will also serve as an excellent filling for various confectionery delights, especially in combination with apples, chocolate, and lemon. After harvesting the plums, be sure to make a couple of jars of jam! There are quite a lot of jam recipes, we will focus on an unusual version, very fragrant and unsurpassed in taste, the delicacy will definitely appeal to children and adults.
To make chocolate-covered plum jam, according to the recipe, take 2 kg of washed fresh plums, 1 kg of granulated sugar, 40-45 grams of cocoa powder and 40 grams of vanilla sugar. The plum with dense pulp is cut into two parts, the seed is removed, 0.5 kg of sugar is poured, gently mixed, trying not to crush, left for 24 hours in a cool room to release the juice.
After a day, add the remaining sugar, pour in vanilla and cocoa powder and put on low heat. Stir the plum with gentle movements and cook for 50-60 minutes. For each variety of plums, the cooking time may differ, and the ripeness of the fruit also affects the duration of the process - the more ripe, the faster it will cook. Once the plum jam is done, transfer the product to the jars and roll up.
Plum jam is prepared using a different technology and differs from jam in consistency, which has a jelly-like structure. For the recipe, you will need 1 kg of plums, 1 kg of sugar, 2.5 g of citric acid, 125 ml of purified drinking water. Bones are removed from the plums, cut into 4 pieces, placed in an enamel saucepan, and poured with boiling water. Then, stirring constantly, cook for 20 minutes over a fairly low heat.
Then they begin to add granulated sugar in small portions and cook for another 35-40 minutes, removing the resulting foam. At the end of cooking, add the lemon, let it simmer for one minute and pour into jars to twist. Jam will differ not only in taste, but also in a beautiful iridescent color.
7. Unusual plum wine - a luxurious drink to the table
For plum wine, according to the recipe, take 10 kg of pitted plums, 4.7 kg of granulated sugar and 1 liter of filtered water. The prepared fruits, cut into 2 parts, are put in a glass jar (bottle), water, granulated sugar are poured and left in a warm room for 3-4 days, not forgetting to cover the neck with gauze.
When the fermentation process begins, a water seal is installed on the bottle or a medical glove is put on in the old fashioned way, after making one or two punctures in the fingers, they are left to ferment for 25-30 days.
A month later, the wort is filtered thoroughly. The pulp must be thoroughly squeezed out, the wort must be filtered using a fine sieve several times. Now the wine is poured into a clean container (preferably made of glass), corked and placed in a dark cool room for further infusion. It will be possible to taste delicious plum wine in 2-3 months.
The longer the wine stands, the tastier and richer it will be. Plum wine has an incredible aroma and pleasant taste, be sure to try making it according to the recipe, you can't buy it in a store! And from wine made from other fruits and berries, plum stands out noticeably.