How to Preserve a Plum

Опубликовал Admin
11-07-2021, 21:20
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Plums are a delicious and refreshing snack, but you may feel overwhelmed if you have too much of this fruit sitting around your home. Thankfully, plums are easy to preserve, and even easier to enjoy later. Set aside an hour or so of your day to wash, slice, and prepare your fruit for long-term storage. Play around with different preservation techniques until you find something that works well for your household!

Freezing Plum Wedges in Sugar Syrup

  1. Wash and cut your plums into halves or quarters. Examine each plum to see if it feels ripe. If your plum has a slight “give” to it, set it aside for freezing. Rinse each plum off with cool water to get rid of any dirt or grime, then slice each fruit in half. Be sure to remove the pits and throw them out.
    • You don’t have to worry about peeling the plums at all.
  2. Pour 4  c (950 mL) of water into a saucepan. Check that the water is lukewarm to the touch before adding it into the pan, so the sugar can dissolve and form a syrup more easily. Place the saucepan on a table or countertop, as you don’t need to heat the water to make syrup.
  3. Mix 3 cups (675 g) of sugar into the water until a syrup forms. Slowly pour in some white sugar into the water and begin stirring both ingredients together with a spoon. Don’t be discouraged if this takes a little while—it may take several minutes before the sugar completely dissolves into the water.
    • This makes about 5 ⁄2  c (1,300 mL) of syrup. If you’re working with a lot of plums, you may need to make more than 1 batch.
    • You don’t need to heat the water and sugar for this process—all you need to do is wait for the sugar to dissolve.
  4. Mix in ½ tsp (2 g) of ascorbic acid into the syrup. Stir the ascorbic acid into the syrup until it dissolves completely. Although it may seem unnecessary, ascorbic acid helps keep your plums fresher for longer.
    • You can find ascorbic acid online, or in your local pharmacy.
  5. Refrigerate the syrup for several hours before using it. Fill individual freezer-safe containers halfway with the syrup. Before adding any fruit, let the syrup chill in the refrigerator for a few hours.
    • The syrup levels will rise when you put the plum pieces in the container, so try not to pour too much in at once.
  6. Arrange your plum pieces in the syrup. Make sure each piece of fruit is completely covered in syrup, so it can be preserved well in the freezer. At this point, pour extra syrup over the fruit to make sure that they’re totally covered. Try to leave ⁄2 to 1 in (1.3 to 2.5 cm) of headspace beneath the lid of each container, depending on how much fruit you’re preparing.
    • It’s okay if you can’t package all of your fruit at once. Do the best you can with the syrup you have on hand! You can always make another batch.
  7. Seal and label the containers of plums. Place the lids on each container, making sure that no air is trapped inside. Take a label or piece of masking tape and write the day’s date on it. Transfer the label to the container of plums so you can remember how fresh they are.
  8. Freeze the plum pieces for up to 1 year. Move the containers of plums to a section of your freezer where you won’t forget about them. While you don’t have to use your plums right away, note that may not taste as fresh or good or fresh if you store them for more than 1 year.
    • You can defrost the plums in the refrigerator when you’re ready to enjoy them. As a general rule of thumb, thaw every 1 US pint (470 mL) of fruit for 12 hours.

Canning Plum Jelly

  1. Wash and destem your plums. Rinse your fruit with cool water to brush off dirt or grime. If you notice any stems, be sure to pluck those out, too.
    • When making jelly, it’s good if ¾ of your fruit is ripe and ¼ is underripe. Ripe plums have a slight give to them, while underripe plums are completely firm.
  2. Add the fruit and 1  c (240 mL) of water to a saucepan. Move your saucepan to the stovetop, and place your washed fruit inside. You’ll probably need a large saucepan for this, especially if you’re making a large batch of jelly. As a general rule of thumb, add 1  c (240 mL) of cold water for every 1 lb (450 g) of fruit that you use.
    • This process helps you extract the plum juice, which is mixed with sugar and pectin to create jelly.
  3. Boil your plums for around 10 minutes. Turn on your stovetop to a high setting and wait for the water to heat up. Once the water is boiling, turn the heat down so your fruit doesn’t burn. Let your plums simmer in the boiling water for 10 minutes so they can soften.
    • It may help to set a timer. Since plums aren’t naturally hard fruits, they don’t need as much time to soften as apples.
  4. Crush the plums with a fork for several seconds to get the juice flowing. Use a fork or something similar to pierce and crush the softened fruit. Try to smash each individual fruit, so the plum juices start mixing with the boiling water. Repeat this process until all the boiled plums are completely crushed and leaking juice.
    • This may be a bit tricky with the plum pits. Just do the best that you can!
  5. Use a jelly bag to strain the plum juice from the pulp. Rinse a clean jelly bag under tap water and wring it out completely so the juice can filter more easily. Arrange the jelly bag over the surface of a large bowl, then pour the plum juice mixture overtop. Continue this process until you’ve filtered all the juice from your crushed plums.
    • The jelly bag helps filter the plum juice, which will be made into jelly.
  6. Transfer the plum juice and 1 package of pectin to a saucepan or kettle. Pour the strained juice into a new container, then mix in 1 packet (50 g) of powdered pectin. Stir the ingredients together until the pectin is completely dissolved.
    • You can find pectin powder at most grocery stores, or you can buy it online. This powder helps give your jelly a gel-like texture.
  7. Stir the ingredients over high heat until they reach a rolling boil. Turn your stovetop to the highest possible setting and start mixing the ingredients together. Continue stirring the pectin and plum juice together until the mixture reaches a rolling boil.
  8. Add 7 cups (1575 g) of sugar and boil the mixture for 1 minute. Once the juice is boiling, pour all the sugar into the pan. Continue mixing the ingredients together as you add the sugar. Let the mixture boil for 1 minute so it can finish cooking.
  9. Fill several glass jars with jelly. Turn off the stovetop and pour any foam into your sink. At this point, transfer the jelly into several clean jars. Try leaving around ⁄4 in (0.64 cm) gap along the top of each bottle, then wipe any excess jelly from the rims.
  10. Seal and your plum jelly within 12 months. Secure the lids tightly on each jar so the jelly doesn’t go bad. At this point, write the current date on a label or piece of masking tape, then place this on the jar. Keep your plum jelly in a cool, dry place, like a pantry or cellar, where it won’t spoil easily. Try to enjoy your jelly within a year, or else it may not taste as fresh and yummy.

Dehydrating Plum Slices

  1. Wash your plums with water. Rinse your fruit with cool tap water to get rid of any grime or dust on the surface. If you see any stems, be sure to pluck and remove them from the fruit.
  2. Slice the fruit into halves. Since plums are pretty small, you don’t need to cut them into a lot of slices. Instead, cut each plum in half, removing the pit as you go. Set your clean, sliced plums to the side so you can keep track of how much you have.
    • You can also dehydrate whole plums. Just be sure to boil the fruit beforehand so the skin cracks slightly.
  3. Soak the slices in an ascorbic acid solution for 10 minutes. Mix 2½ tbsp (10 g) of ascorbic acid into 1 US qt (950 mL) of cold water, which will help preserve your plums and make them last longer. Once the acid is totally dissolved, dump your plum slices into the solution and let them sit for 10 minutes. After this, drain the fruit completely so it’s ready to go in the dehydrator.
  4. Arrange your slices onto the dehydrator tray. Place the fruit in a single layer, making sure that none of the slices are overlapping. Check that each plum piece is laying pit-side-up, which allows the fruit to dry more efficiently.
  5. Dry the plums at 140 °F (60 °C) for at least 24 hours. Let the fruit slices dry for 24-36 hours, or until the plums look leathery. If you want to be extra cautious, check on the fruit after 1 day to see how it looks.
  6. Store your dried plum pieces in an air-tight container for up to 1 year. Move your dried, leathery plum pieces into a clean container. Seal the lid so no air is trapped inside, then label the container with the current date. Try to eat your plums within 12 months, or else they may not taste as fresh and delicious.

Ingredients

Sugar Syrup for Freezing

  • 3 cups (675 g) of white sugar
  • 4  c (950 mL) of water

Plum Jelly

  • 1  c (240 mL) of water
  • 1 package (49 g) of pectin powder
  • 7 cups (1575 g) of white sugar

Tips

  • You can also try fermenting your fruit, if you want.

Warnings

  • Be very careful handling the hot jelly when you pour it into the clean jars, as it will be extremely hot.

Things You’ll Need

Freezing Plum Wedges in Sugar Syrup

  • Knife
  • Water
  • Saucepan
  • ½ tsp (2 g) of ascorbic acid
  • Air-tight containers
  • Label or masking tape

Canning Plum Jelly

  • Water
  • Saucepan
  • Jelly bag
  • Jars
  • Paper towel
  • Label or masking tape

Dehydrating Plum Slices

  • Water
  • Knife
  • 2½ (10 g) of ascorbic acid
  • Food dehydrator
  • Air-tight containers
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