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so, there I was standing in the kitchen getting ready to start my day and my husband walks in the front door with a cool filled with wild plums that he just picked for me! I was so excited! These little gems pack quite a flavor. Sometimes they are super sweet and very peach-like and sometimes they carry just the right amount of tart to make you pucker a bit LOL. I decided not to try and remove the skins and instead - canned them whole in a medium syrup with some vanilla bean infused taste (hoping that mellows out any bitter/tart skin) I ended up with 7 pints this time around and now that they are canned, I can use them in Holiday pies, hand pies, mix into desserts, crush into a quick jam or sauce for Christmas Dinner...the possibilities are endless...Enjoy - Diane
Colorado Wild Plums with Vanilla Bean Infused Medium Syrup
*I split one large vanilla bean down its center, scrape bean paste into saucepan and then toss the remaining pieces of bean in also...I remove the intact bean before using the syrup in jarring/canning.
PREPARE syrup by combining 2-1/4 cups granulated sugar and 5-1/4 cups water for light and 3-1/4 cups granulated sugar and 5 cups water for medium in a stainless steel saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Reduce heat to low and keep warm until needed, taking care not to boil the syrup down.
PREPARE boiling water canner. Heat jars and lids in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil. Set bands aside.
PRICK whole plums in several places using a fork. (I used a sewing needle) In a large stainless steel saucepan, one layer at a time, warm plums in hot syrup over medium-low heat until heated through, about 2 minutes per layer. Using a slotted spoon, transfer each batch to a bowl and keep hot. After all the plums have been heated, remove saucepan from heat and return plums to the syrup. Cover and let stand for 30 minutes. Return to a boil before packing.
PACK hot plums into hot jars, using a slotted spoon, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Ladle hot syrup into hot jars to cover plums leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace, if necessary, by adding hot syrup. Wipe rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band until fit is fingertip tight.
PROCESS jars in a boiling water canner 20 minutes for pints and 25 minutes for quarts, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed.
Recipe Adapted from: Ball Canning
Photo by: Canning and Cooking at Home
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Diane Baker: Owner & Creator of Canning and Cooking at Home