Spiced-plums poached in brandy is a really simple fruit preserve to make, and once made these jars can last for many months preserved. Bottling fruit like this, in a brandy syrup has always been a great way to preserve the flavours and fruits of autumn, and to provide a store of instant desserts during the barren winter months. When you want to serve them, serve with whipped cream, with a little bit of the brandy syrup spooned over.
Spiced-Plums In Brandy
Makes about 900g of spiced-plums to pot.
- 900g plums
- 600ml brandy
- 1 lemon (rind peeled in a long, wide strip)
- 4 allspice berries (bruised)
- 350g caster sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick (in two pieces)
- 1 star-anise
Pick over the plums, wash and dry them. Peel off a wide strip of lemon peel (zest only, no white pith). Put the brandy, lemon rind strip, allspice berries, star-anise, caster sugar and cinnamon stick in a large saucepan, and heat gently until the sugar dissolves. Add the plums and poach on a gentle for 20 minutes until soft. Remove the fruit from the pan, with a slotted spoon, and pack the plums in sterilized jars.
Remove the star-anise and allspice berries (discard). Boil the remaining brandy syrup rapidly until it is reduced by a third, then strain this thickened syrup over the plums, to cover, add the cinnamon stick. Seal the jars tightly. Label when cold and store for up to 6 months in a cool, dark place.