I know, I know, I have been away from this blog for soo long that I probably have no-one left reading! Well being pregnant just sucks your life away, FACT. I have no idea what I have done in the last few months but time and energy have seemed in very short supply! I most certainly have not had a surfeit of those! I do however have a newly decorated house, a beautiful nursery, a freezer full of batch home cooking, a massive bump and a million baby related essentials :-)
Anyway, onwards, hopefully this is the start of many more posts :-) and I promise they won't all be about babies and pureed vegetables! In case you are wondering, no, he isn't here yet. he is due on the 20 August and so far no signs to speak of... watch this space!
I think I have mentioned, but my sister and her partner Mark have an allotment. Having popped down there the other sunday eve to lend a hand, Dominic arrived home, 4 hours later, hungry, and with a carrier bag full of plums. I mean full. I mean, I weighed them and there were 10 and a half pounds of them!
So, Wwe spend a pleasant hour sat at our table stoning them all, except for the ones required for what I am about to share with you next. I totally forgot about the finger staining properties of plums and we both looked like 40 a day smokers by the end of it! Anyway, it was quite good fun to be honest. I did them one at a time, whilst Dom did the cutting bit first of a few and them stoned them. ever the competitor he even timed us doing ten each at one point to see whose method was fastest! His was, but by about 2 seconds so really, do we care? No we don't!
So, wanna know what I made first?
Welcome to Spiced Plum Liqueur!
This is ridiculously easy, it literally takes 5 minutes.
1 lb of plums, washed and pricked all over with a pin (I was lazy and used a fork!)
6 oz caster sugar
A pint or so of spirits - I used 350ml vodka and 120ml of brandy (sorry for mixing imperial/ metric, I was born in the 1970s)
2 cinnamon sticks snapped in half
about 10 cloves
Place all in a litre kilner jar. Close tightly and shake up.
Keep in a dark place for 2 months, shaking every 3 days or so. Everything should act upon each other and the plums impart juice and colour into the booze.
The brilliant thing about this is that when it's ready, you decant the liquid bit into bottles as a drink (straining out the plums and spices) and then rebottle the plums in a light sugar syrup (maybe with more booze, a splash of ginger wine would be awesome) to eat as dessert with ice cream etc, so it's like two for the price of one! I am sure they would make EXCELLENT gifts for Christmas and the like. Unfortunately I am just not that nice! I intend to test the liqueur on bonfire night at the allotment (ok, I'll share it with those there!) and them keep the rest for Christmas, maybe take some to the cottage for our New Year break to sip in front of the fire... bliss! Can you imagine that boozy, spicy, plummy taste, slipping down very nicely... or the sodden, sweet plums with some cold cold vanilla ice or a dollop of clotted cream...
More plumminess soon... can't say when, ideally tomorrow but the baby might have other ideas!