Author Notes: Instead of the usual 2:1 ratio of fruit to sugar, I added a little blueberry juice (that's whole organic blueberry juice, with no added sugar or preservatives) to get the plums going and to lend bit more depth of flavor, along with a touch of maple syrup.
Since I use very little sweetener and the fruit is quite juicy, I use kuzu to help set up the preserves, especially since plums are not particularly high in natural pectin. If you are not familiar with kuzu, it's a starch that's also known as Japanese arrowroot and it looks like a white clumpy powder.
Go to www.thecleangourmet.com to visit the original recipe.
Makes: about 16 ounces
quart Damson plums, pitted and roughly chopped
cup good quality blueberry juice
teaspoons vanilla extract or half of one vanilla bean, split lengthwise
tablespoon vodka, lemon juice or red wine vinegar
cinnamon stick, 1 star anise, 4 cloves (optional)
teaspoons kuzu, dissolved in 2 teaspoons water
- Place all ingredients, except for kuzu, in a medium pot (heavy-bottomed is best) over medium-low heat.
- Bring to a boil and reduce heat to very low and simmer for 1 hour, until the plums have broken down and the liquid has reduced. Stir every 15 minutes or so to make sure there is no sticking to the pot.
- Make a slurry with the kuzu by dissolving it in the 2 teaspoons of water. Add to simmering plums and mix thoroughly. Bring plums to a low boil and let continue for about 5 minutes. Reduce heat and simmer for another 20-30 minutes, until the liquid is thickened and reduced enough.
- Remove from heat and let cool 10-15 minutes. Remove cinnamon stick and/or star anise, if using, and pour cooked plums into blender and run until smooth.
- Pour into a sterilized jar (or several small jars), seal and refrigerate.
- Spread on toast, grain-free almond muffins (as pictured) or dollop onto local grass-fed yogurt. Keeps for 2-3 weeks in refrigerator.