Sunday, January 22, 2012

Plums, plums and yes ...more plums.

The Japanese blood plums (Satsuma I think) have had an amazing crop this year. This photo was taken  after I had picked at least a couple of buckets. The blackbirds have developed a bit of a taste for them despite the CDs hanging in the branches to frighten them off. Last weekend I made a very attractive scarecrow to put near the tree and each day I have been putting a transistor radio tuned to a very annoying station under the tree as well to try to deter them.
A very scary scarecrow
 At least I have been able to give the plums an extra week to ripen. But when I heard some parrots in the garden on Saturday, I decided to pick the bulk of the crop. So it has been plums, plums and more plums this weekend.   I have bottled, made jam, made plum sauce, and for the first time, a Blood Plum cordial.

This is a photo of the resulting cordial mixed with some soda water.
 Very refreshing on a warm evening. It is made from plums stewed with a little orange juice and lemon juice and then strained through muslin. The liquid is then mixed with an equal amount of sugar and simmered for a few minutes. The pulp came in useful to make some plum leather.
Plum leather

The zucchinis are starting to go crazy as well so I have started making my favourite zucchini pickle recipe. As well as onion and zucchini salted overnight, you also salt some lemon rind and add them to the the pickle a lovely lemony edge.
No not more plums but my zucchini pickle

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