I bought a few pounds of red plums last year, and what I didn’t eat, I made into PLUM JAM. It is the B*E*S*T Jam I have ever made, and not only that, IT JELLED the very first time (I think because the plums are rather small and tart.)
So, this year, I bought a few pounds at the Farmers Market, and I have been eating them; but I have enough jam from last summer to do me just fine for this summer. And then, they started to get a little ripe. Okay, a few were getting OVER RIPE! What to do?
I thought, do people make Plum Pie? It doesn’t sound familiar. So I looked it up on the innertubes, and I saw that “Rustic Plum Tart” is super popular. I thought about making a couple of them (I needed to make my neighbor Jeannie a pie, too), but, I have MADE these “Rustic Tarts” before (I made a Rustic Apple Tart once, out of the Hudson’s on the Bend cookbook), and I found that I missed the crumb topping that I usually use on fruit pies.
So, I decided to make PIE, not a TART, and to use a crumb topping. For the filling, I decided to use unpeeled plums (the Rustic Tart recipes didn’t peel) and I thought it sounded nice to use lemon zest and almond extract and brown sugar. And lemon juice.
The pies turned out SPECTACULARLY. So well, that Dave said it is his new favorite kind of pie. I wonder why Plum Pie isn’t as well known as Cherry Pie? Because it is just as red and vibrant as cherry.
MADE UP PLUM PIE
Enough red plums to make a pie
3/4 cup light brown sugar
a teaspoon of almond extract
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cups flour
2 sticks butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
I suddenly realize I haven’t ever blogged my SPECIFIC instructions for PIE CRUST. OY!! I don’t want to get into the specifics NOW! It will take a million years! I am just going to assume you know how to make a pie crust.
1. Using one cup a flour, 1/4 t of salt, and 3/4 a stick of butter, MAKE A PIECRUST.
2. Slice the red plums off of the pits, using a little paring knife, into a bowl.
3. In another bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, cornstarch, and almond extract, in that order.
4. Pour the brown sugar mixture over the plums, and toss around with a rubber spatula.
5. Dump fruit into pie crust. The fruit should be sort of shallow, not deep-dish, about an inch and a half to two inches deep.
6. Zest the lemon over the plums in the pie pan.
7. Cut the lemon in half, and squeeze the juice of half the lemon over the plums. Put the other half off the lemon into your ice tea, or vodka and tonic. Or beer. Or water!
8. Put the remaining flour, white sugar, and quarter teaspoon of salt into the food processor. Pulse. Add the stick of butter, sliced, and pulse until it is crumbs.
9. Arrange crumbs on top of fruit, and bake entire pie in a 350˚ oven until the crust is visibly browning and the plum juice is visibly bubbling at the rim. About 40-50 minutes.