It’s plum season! And I’ve had a crops of juicy yellow plums and sweet greengage plums arrive in my kitchen! (Thank you to everyone who went picking and shared with me!)
We certainly have been eating plums, and freezing plums. I decided to also turn some of the plums into a popular Chinese condiment, plum sauce!. And then I decided to ferment it. (Of course.) Because I know that nothing improves flavour quite like fermentation!
- 8 cups of plums, cut in half and pitted
- 1 cup of onion chopped
- 1 tsp minced ginger
- 1 clove of garlic minced
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground clove
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- ½ tsp salt (non-iodized)
- ¼ cup culture (whey, kombucha, water kefir)
- Sweetener to taste (see notes)
- In large heavy saucepan, bring plums, onions, ginger and garlic to boil over (liquid will come from the plums)
- Simmer on low with the cover on until plums and onions are very tender, about 30 minutes.
- At this point you can put it through a food mill for a smooth sauce, or leave it chunky.
- Stir in the spices and continue to simmer until it is thick, like applesauce.
- Remove from heat and pour into glass jars for fermenting, leaving 2 cm of headroom at the top.
- Allow to cool to room temperature.
- Stir 1 tbsp of culture into each cup of plum sauce (2 tbsp per pint sized jar).
- Put on the lid and leave to ferment at room temperature for 2-3 days.
- After it's done fermenting, stir in the sweetener and store in the fridge. It may be a bit sparky from the fermentation, but sitting in the fridge for a week should slow that down.
-Any room temperature starter culture would work. I used kefir whey, but water kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut juice would all work as well.
-I put 1 tbsp of honey into each 2 cup jar for my sweetener. However, my sauce was very tart. If you want a sweeter sauce (more like what you get in the store), then add up to 1/3 cup of sugar in each pint jar.
-I wanted to ferment a traditional Chinese-style plum sauce and quickly discovered that (like most traditional recipes) there are a thousand variations. Feel free to change around the spices and the flavours of this sauce to suit your tastes (mustard, Chinese 5-spice, etc).
-Thanks to Om Nom Ally for the inspiration!