Farm Fresh Pick of the Week: Plums

Friday, June 15, 2012 7:00

Before They Were Prunes…

By Casey Pukl

Fresh plums are something that I’ve always had a hard time finding. Let me clarify; good fresh ripe plums are hard to find. But when you do finally find those delicious, soft, slightly sweet and slightly tart little purple gems, you’ve got to make something extra special. This week, Marc & Jamie really took advantage of some beautiful plums, and fortunately for you, we all get to reap the benefits of their culinary skill. ¬†Read on to find out how to make an incredible dessert from poached plums, and an unexpected herbal take on the classic Old Fashioned.

Poached Plum
Lemon Peppercorn Simple Syrup, Creme Fraiche Mousse, Whiskey Ginger Ice Cream

In a word, this dessert is positively delightful. The warm plums are slightly sweet, tart, and peppery after being poached in a lemon peppercorn simple syrup. The cool creme fraiche gives a thicker creamy texture to keep the dish grounded, and the ice cream gives it a kick. The ginger is slightly spicy, and the whiskey gives a caramel-y sweetness that makes it irresistible.

Pastry Chef, Jamie Crone, had a few tips for how to recreate this delicious dish. First, she recommends making a simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water) and adding fresh lemon juice and peppercorns. Cook the syrup until it thickens slightly, and add the plums. Poach until soft. While the plums are poaching, you’ll want to fold the creme fraich, vanilla bean, and gelatin into freshly whipped cream at the soft peak stage.

To make the whiskey ginger ice cream, steep the ginger in the milk, then add the whiskey, eggs, and sugar. Cook for a few minutes so that some of the alcohol cooks off (it needs to in order to freeze properly). Then let the mixture cool, and spin it through an ice cream machine.

This dessert is well worth your time (and the calories)! It’s fresh, light, and extremely addictive.

Stone Fruit Old Fashioned 
Creator: Marc Canzoneri

2oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon
.25oz Honey
Ripe Plum
Cherry Bitters
Soda Water

Ingredients: Muddle together segments of ripe plum, sage, and honey. Add bourbon, ice, and shake. Pour over ice, add 2 dashes of cherry bitters, and top with soda water. Garnish with a slice of plum and sage leaves.

I could drink this all day every day. Sweet plums, herbal sage, caramel tinged bourbon… what more could a girl ask for? It’s a Kentucky garden in a glass.

Bar manager Marc Canzoneri has one major tip for those of you making this one at home.”Use ripe plums! You want your plums to be slightly soft to the touch and a deep red color. If you use plums that aren’t ripe, your drink will be tart instead of sweet.”

Be sure to come on in and give these specials a try! As always, they’re available as long as those delicious ripe plums last, so be sure to try them while you can!