Sunday, September 2, 2012

Preparing for winter: Plum jam with black pepper


Home made plum jam with black pepper

If I had a choice of just one spice for the rest of my life it would have to be black pepper. Salt and black pepper for the savoury dishes and I could live with that. Assuming I could additionally have sugar for desserts that would leave room for an exciting playground. For a couple of years now, on and off, I have been flirting with black pepper in sweet combinations with great success to my taste. If the presence of chilli in a dessert would be recognisable as a striking soprano, then the black pepper has rather a lower voice, like alto, to perform in the choir.

I would characterise the black pepper in a dessert as deceptive in the beginning, luring around the corners and then explosive like a New Year´s fireworks, or in case of Switzerland rather like a 1st of August fireworks. The Swiss National Day in the capital of the country ends with great privately sponsored fireworks in 6 scenes accompanied by special arrangement of music on a local radio channel. People gather in best viewing places, some bring their radios. But back to pepper, the mouthful of the dessert starts sweet followed by a flash of “what was that?” and the surprise kicks the palate at the end leaving the eater open eyed thinking let me try again to see what just happened, again and again...

Plum Jam

Plum jam with black pepper

1.2 kg plums, remove the stones and cut into small(er) pieces (Zwetschgen in Swiss German)
1 kg of sugar or special marmalade sugar
1-2 tbsp freshly ground black pepper or vary to your taste

Wash and prepare the fruit, bring to boil with sugar and boil for ca 5 minutes until fruit is soft. Follow the instructions on the pack if using the special marmalade sugar.
Remove the foam. At the end stir in the black pepper.
Fill the glasses and close with the lids while still hot.

Related posts:  Peppery Strawberries