Monday, September 13, 2010

Vanilla Rum Plums

Week #4 of Nourished Kitchen's Preserving Summer's Bounty Challenge focused on preserving in alcohol. Alcohol is naturally antimicrobial and is well-suited to preserving fruits. I've heard of this being done from many blogs and people that I know (usually cherries in brandy with the folks I know that do it). I've wanted to give it a try for a couple of years now, but just never had. So, I decided to give it a try at the end of August, during week #4 of the challenge. I just used the recipe sent in our Week #4 email from Jenny at Nourished Kitchen. I picked up some dark rum and then some plums at our local farmers' market. I did two different pints, one with dark purple Stanley plums and one with a lighter purple-pink sweet plum (I can't remember the variety now). I made them both the same way and I'm excited to pop them open this winter to taste them... and see which one we like best.

Vanilla Rum Plums

about 2 cups of small plums, loosely packed
about 1/2 cup unrefined cane sugar
about 1 quart dark rum
3 vanilla beans

Wash the plums, remove their stems and pat them dry before pricking them several places with a pin. Place them in a 1-quart mason jar (I just used pint jars since I'm not sure we'll like them and didn't want to waste), cutting the larger plums that don't quite fit. Add the vanilla beans to the jar too.

Meanwhile, heat the rum and unrefined cane sugar together until the sugar dissolves in the alcohol. Pour the sweetened rum over the plums, taking care that their completely submerged by the alcohol.

Cap tightly and store in a cool place (or your fridge) until next season, using a few plums as it suits you.