Last year, I bought a small amount of damson plums for the first time from the farmers market with no real idea as to what they would taste like. I was initially attracted to how beautiful they were – small, delicate and such a gorgeously deep indigo blue. “They are no good for eating,” the farmer at the stand told me. Alright then, maybe they would be good for cooking? I gave one a taste and just as the farmer said, definitely not good for eating. Unlike the plums that you usually find in stores, these plums are not especially juicy and definitely not sweet. Appealing right? Well those exact same characteristics makes this plum ideal for cooking and jams. The harder flesh secretly contains a super concentrated plum flavor that is complex. Initially tart, once cooked it reveals a multifaceted play between tart and sweet. It makes some of the best plum jam, I’ve ever tasted.
This year I could not wait until these little jewels came back into the market. I was a little worried that the wouldn’t be available this year, because I had heard that the cold from earlier this year wiped out much of the stone fruits in the Hudson Valley. Luckily they did appear and I wanted to make a very special jam with these.
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