Yesterday’s food shoot was all about ‘The Plum’! And what a beautiful fruit it is, with it’s deep, rich colouring, sweet smell and juicy bite. While “picking” the fruit at the market and then preparing it for the different dishes, I was reminded of an incredible experience with preparing plums in France…
It was a European summer’s day in Charroux, a small town in the Bourbonnais region in the midlands of France. I was in the kitchen, de-pipping plums before they would be baked in the oven and served with crème fraîche and toasted nuts.
The window was open to allow a light breeze to circulate the food scents throughout the kitchen and on the other side of the old wooden frame was a view of the garden in full bloom, home to nesting doves and other birds. My hands were stained deep red but I refused to wear gloves as I cut through the flesh of the plums, gently twisting them open and scooping out the small pip…it’s a beautiful thing to feel the best of nature’s gifts in your hands.
I learned many things during my time in Charroux, but it was in that moment that I realised what food appreciation is: how important it is to know where your food comes from and how it is grown, the joy of using your hands in food preparation and the gift to be able to share your food with others.
Who knew plums were so versatile – poached plums, fresh plums, spiced plum jam drizzled over your favourite meat (or grilled vegetables), plums to flavour water, plum frangipane tart (my new favourite), and the list goes on.
It’s a wonderful thing to enjoy fruits in their season. Keep a look out for what’s hot in your region and support local.