After writing about this cherry recipe from The Atlantic yesterday, we decided to try the leave-the-pits-in method with another fruit: plums. It was so easy and fast, and we love the way the whole, pudgy plum looks nestled in a bowl with some ice cream. Get the recipe, below...
We followed a similar technique as in the cherry recipe, stewing our fruit in a mixture of water and sugar. But because we used so little liquid, we really could call this steaming rather than poaching. We wanted just enough water to simmer without going dry, but we wanted it to reduce into a syrup by the end.
Our "poaching" liquid was simply water, brown sugar, and a bit of lemon zest for some zing. But you could add a cinnamon stick, vanilla bean, or other spices as you see fit.
The whole thing took 20 minutes—not as quick as these, but still pretty effortless. And we like the presentation of the whole plum. Plus, the fruit is so soft by the end, it's easy to carve the flesh away from the pit with a spoon.
Poached Plums with Brown Sugar Syrup
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
lemon zest (just a few strands- no more than 1/4 teaspoon)
2 medium plums
Combine the water and brown sugar in a small saucepan with a lid. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Add the lemon zest, then set the plums in the bottom of the pan, reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, remove the lid and continue simmering for about 8-10 minutes, until the liquid has thickened. Turn off the heat and allow the plums to cool for about 5 minutes. Serve in individual bowls, topped with vanilla ice cream and drizzled with the brown sugar syrup.
(Images: Elizabeth Passarella)