Monday, September 19, 2011

Little Jack Horner’s thumb

Subtle? No.  This week’s Wednesday Wheat is Plum.  Tapped at the usual time of 4PM.  I learn more each week as I hope all you do as well.  When I went to pick out fresh plums, I had to choose between red and black.  I wasn’t sure which to use,….so I used both.  This will be a 50/50 red/black Plum Wheat.  If you want to learn more about this stone fruit, read on:

  • technically a stone fruit, just like Peaches, Cherries and apricots
  • craft beer enthusiasts will be pleased to know that it was named by Pliny the Elder
  • a pluot is a cross between a plum and apricot
  • The dusty-white coating on plums is called a epicuticular wax and is known as “Wax Bloom”
  • plums are synonymous with prunes and prunes are synonymous with laxatives
  • as a result of the bad reputation, most companies have started marketing these as “dried plums” instead
  • typically you cannot dry a plum and call it a “prune”, prunes are usually from the Freestone variety since the pit is easier to remove
  • Dr. Pepper contains no prune juice

Uses for Plums, other than adding to beer:

  • dry them into prunes!
  • jams and jellies
  • pies and cakes
  • wine, brandy and other liquors (Sloe Gin is made from a type of plum)
  • baked, roasted, stewed
  • plum sauce and chutney

My personal memories of plums are quite fond as we grew up across the road from a small grove of about 5 plum trees.  Each year we’d sneak over there and each about 4-6 of them.  I don’t remember it affecting my digestive system, but they probably did.   Now that I know there are red and black common varieties, I’m now wondering what type there were….I remember eating purple. I know this is a short list of uses, does anybody have more uses for them?


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