When the fruit flies descend on your summer plums that are sitting so prettily in a bowl on the counter, you know they are ripe enough to use for chutney or jam. I think the fruit fly research lab at Caltech would be jealous of the colony I had going there a few days ago. I was running a veritable condo complex for those critters.
(TMI for a cooking blog? Oh, dear, you must get over it! Fruit flies don’t circle around unripe fruit, do they? Case closed.)
I found it over at Chocolates & Dreams, where Rituparna, a passionate cook from Delhi, India, has been blogging since 2009. She has previously featured my recipe for Nutella Hot Chocolate on her blog, so I decided to see what delicious recipe I could snag from her in return.
I was tempted by her Potato Spinach Soup because of my love of both of those ingredients. And how popular would I be at home if I made her Thai Coffee Cupcakes? On a very courageous cooking day I would like to try her Palak Paneer and her Coriander Chutney because I always order them in Indian restaurants.
But no, I had a plethora of ripe plums on the counter, so her Plum Chutney was the winning solution! This is the way her mom makes it, a traditional Bengali way, for those who like a tangy chutney.
I made a few alterations to suit myself (less sugar, less pepper, all of the ginger not just the juice, a tiny bit of vanilla, etc.). It’s easy, and goes to show you that really, truly, all you need is some super-ripe summer stone fruit and you can have wonderful chutney or jam in less than half an hour.
Recipe: Indian Plum Chutney or Jam
- 8-9 ounces ripe plums (250 grams; 2 large plums or 3-4 small/medium plums)
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup sugar
- Pinch of kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon finely minced fresh ginger
- A few grinds black pepper (she uses ½ teaspoon but that would be a lot for American taste buds!)
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
- Wash and cut the plums into quarters, discarding the pit. Leave the skin on. Slice plums roughly into a small, heavy saucepan. Add water and bring to a boil.
- When it boils, add sugar, salt, ginger, black pepper and vanilla (if using). Let it boil for another 7-10 minutes, uncovered, and stirring occasionally. Adjust heat so it won’t boil over. The consistency will be like liquid jelly.
- Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
- Rituparna says, “Enjoy on its own or with almost anything you want to pair it with, from spreading it over a piece of toast to mixing it with rice at the end of the meal, which is the traditional Bengali form of eating it. Mixing with cooked rice is like a tangy finish to a delicious meal. The desserts come later. You can also try having it with tortilla chips. We traditionally serve it with fried papad. It is delicious that way.”
Adapted from Chocolates & Dreams
These are Honey Punch Plumcots, a variety distributed by Melissa’s Produce, and grown by Phillips Farms in California. Honey Punch has dark red skin, gorgeous red flesh, and a wonderful flavor! I was lucky enough to get mine straight from the farmer, but if you see them in your market, don’t hesitate to get some!
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Diet type: Vegan, Vegetarian
Diet tags: Reduced fat, Gluten free
Number of servings (yield): 6
Culinary tradition: Indian (Eastern)
Here are all the recipes I have discovered through Secret Recipe Club. All of them are wonderful!
Aug. 2012: Indian Plum Chutney
July 2012: Pizza Potatoes over Sauteed Spinach
June 2012: Chicken Gyros
May 2012: Orange-Almond Yogurt Cake
April 2012: Chard Lasagna Roll-Ups
March 2012: Lemon-Lime Basil Shortbread Cookies
Feb. 2012: Lemony Pasta with Smoked Salmon and Dill
Dec. 2011: Sweet Potato, Black-Eyed Pea and Broccoli Bowl
Nov. 2011: Santa’s Favorite Cookie
This post is part of the monthly Secret Recipe Club, in which participants are secretly assigned another’s food blog to explore and cook from for a month. Today is our “reveal day,” in which we ‘fess up and share which blog we had.
Thanks, Rituparna, for such a great recipe, and so many delicious options throughout your site!