I kind of underestimated the plum challenge for the IFBM (Indian Food Bloggers Meet held in Bangalore on the 1st and 2nd of August). The plum was a much harder fruit to work with than I had imagined. I've cooked with other pit fruits such as peaches and cherries and really enjoyed the outcome. So what made the plum harder- probably the tartness and sourness followed by the bitterness, the stringy fleshiness that was hard to structure. I attempted a bunch of things sauce for sundaes and pancakes, a plum chutney, a marinade for pork. They were interesting
I discovered that plum changes colour depending on how you cook it. Each time the outcome was a different shade of plum. I've decieded to call this series the 50 Shades of plum. Check out the deep red rendition- A mascarpone and plum pie- A deep shade of red
I took a step back and thought of what would be a simple and yet elegant dish. The beauty of the plum was the varied colours, the deep plum hue of the skin and the varied shades of red and pink of the flesh. The tarty plum fruit had the perfect makings of a sorbet. I decided to pair the sorbet with a caramel sauce to cut the sourness and add a sprinkle of salt and pepper for contrast.
An ice cream machine is highly recommended. My friend Sanjana of La Folie kindly let me use her machine.
INGREDIENTS FOR THE SORBET:
-2.5 cups plums pitted (around a kg)
- 1⁄4 cup +2 tbsp castor sugar
- 1⁄2 tsp of lemon juice
- 1 tsp of sea salt
- Crushed black pepper
MAKING THE PLUM SORBET
- Blend plums and sieve out the skin or use a juicer
- Cook sugar, plum juice and lemon juice until all sugar dissolves.
- Leave it to cool over night
- Add sea salt and pepper to flavour just before you pour the juice in the ice cream maker
- Churn the juice in the ice cream maker until it sets
- Scoop out the sorbet and place in an airtight container.
- Place it in the freezer until it completely sets.
Adding sea salt has two advantages. It cuts through the acidity of the plum puree
and gives it character and it helps in reducing the melt down of the sorbet.
INGREDIENTS FOR THE CARAMEL SAUCE
3 tbsp castor sugar
2-3 basil leaves
a pad of butter
1/2 a cup of water
MAKING THE CARAMEL SAUCE
- Start by heating a tbsp of castor sugar
- As it starts to become transparent add more sugar slowly
- When the sugar is a golden colour and boiling, add a pad of butter. This gives a nice glaze to the sauce
- Soak the basil leaves in the 1/2 cup of water
- Once the butter is melted, carefully add the water
- Turn the heat down and let it slowly cook till it thickens slightly
- Take it off the heat and let it cool down
- The sauce will thicken significantly into a sticky gooey consistency
ASSEMBLING THE SORBET
The beauty of a sorbet is its simplicity. I did not want to take away from the simple and modern nature of a sorbet. Enjoy the contrast of flavours without fussing too much.
The trailer for Fifty Shades of Grey released today and I was struck by Beyonce's remix of her old classic Crazy in Love- in a slower and sexier version. Just like this shade of blush above. Of all the things I made- this one made me stop and Sigh!
Enjoy this song..