Last fall, some friends invited us to pick all the plums from their plum trees. Their house had just sold and they were moving, so they just wanted to the trees cleaned off. They didn’t want the new owners to have to deal with fruit falling off the trees making a mess right when they moved in.
We were happy to help them out, but I had no idea what we were going to do with all those plums. Of course many were eaten whole. They make a great snack (though they can be messy for 2-year-olds) and go great in sack lunches.
With the rest of the plums, we decided to make plum sauce and can it in quart canning jars. Freezing works great too, if you have freezer space to spare.
Making Plum Sauce
You can call it plum sauce or plum puree, but no matter what you call it, the process to make it is pretty simple. I didn’t take pictures of every step since back when I made plum sauce, Six Figures Under was only a figment of my imagination. Thankfully I did take a few pictures!
Wash plums and remove pits by cutting plums in half and popping out the pit. If the plums are ripe and juicy, the result might look like a crime scene.
Blend plum halves (skin and all) in your blender or food processor until you get a puree of an even consistency. This was back before we killed our secondhand blender by making green smoothies. We’ve since upgraded to the best blender in the world.
Bring the plum puree to a boil in a pot on your stove top. If you’re going to can it, you’ll want it to be hot when you put it into hot jars. If you are just freezing your plum puree, you can skip this step.
Canning Plum Sauce
You can freeze your plum puree, have it fresh, or preserve it in canning jars. This is going to look pretty much the same as canning homemade applesauce, including the processing times, so if you are interested in canning your plum sauce, check out my applesauce tutorial where the process is broken into simple steps with lots of pictures.
What to do with plum sauce
When we first made plum sauce I wasn’t quite sure what we would do with it. I had a few ideas, but the possibilities really opened up! Here are some of our favorites.
We eat lots of homemade pancakes around here. My husband isn’t a fan of sugary syrups, so we always have fruit on our pancakes. We’ll open a jar of applesauce, pear sauce, or plum sauce, or maybe even all three!
We save money by enjoying hot cereal more often than cold cereal. Adding a spoonful of plum sauce not only adds flavor, but it helps to cool down the hot oatmeal.
Substitute for Oil
You probably know that applesauce can be substituted for oil in baking recipes, but did you know that plum sauce does the trick too? Plum puree can be substituted for oil (1:1 ratio). Plum sauce does have a dark purple color, so it won’t exactly “hide,” but it works great in chocolate recipes (like brownies) or in pumpkin bread. It adds a zing of fruit flavor and some extra nutrition too!
We’ve found that green smoothies are one of the easiest ways to get our kids to eat veggies. Adding in some plum sauce adds color, flavor, and nutrition. It acts as a thickener too, just like homemade yogurt.
Now that we’ve incorporated plum sauce into our regular kitchen routine and love it, we will definitely miss it when we run out! Our friends with the plum trees moved away, so we lost our source of free plums. Thankfully we’re set for a while!
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