Sugar plum sweetness

Plum marks the return of the sun and the colors on your plate ... raw or cooked, jam or dessert, plum has something to tantalize our taste buds!

Plum in brief:

French Production (1): 56 000 tonnes (average 2008-2012)
Production areas Midi-Pyrenees, PACA, Rhône-Alpes
Availability : July-October
Peak season : August
Average price in 2013 (2): € 2.83 / kg
Home consumption in 2013 (2): 1 kg per household
Nutrition (3): 100 g of plum 48.7 kcal

Culture plum side

The plum tree is sometimes used as an ornamental. However, it is usually grown for its fruit. This is one of the most planted fruit trees in France. The plum is a robust tree that is resistant to cold, so we can find it both in the North and the South.

The first flowers begin to appear on the branches in early spring. But it was in July that the first fruits can be picked.

The later varieties are even desire to September.

A little history

We do not know the exact origin of plum that is cultivated in France today. It is derived from a cross between several European and Asian species dating back thousands of years. The culture of plums seems very old. Archaeologists have found the nuclei close to those of the Mirabelle at sites dating from the Bronze Age.

We also know that in Egypt, dried plums were placed in the tombs of the pyramids. Plum was also very cultivated in Syria, where the Crusaders were arrested. According to legend, they brought back from their trip as feet plum, thus was born the phrase "go for nothing."

In France, it is from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance and especially the plum is very successful. One of them also take the "greengage" in honor of Francis I's wife who loved them.

Plum side kitchen

Touch, plums must be flexible without being soft. The skin is smooth, without spot, and gives off a good scent. The little white veil that covers the bloom is called: a kind of natural wax shield the fruit makes for protection from the sun. His presence is a guarantee of freshness and proves that the fruit has not suffered too much manipulation. Note that some varieties are naturally lacking.

There are many varieties of plums, though rarely more than four found in our markets:

  • there greengage, well-rounded, yellow to green, and has a firm and sweet flesh;
  • there Mirabelle, smaller gold with a yellow-orange flesh with soft and sweet flavors;
  • there quetsche deep purple and Japanese-American whose Golden Japan or Blackamber.

Conservation plums

Plums are eaten soon after purchase. So the ideal is to eat them the same day.

According to their maturity, it is possible to keep the ten days in a refrigerator. It is better to remove the vegetable bin few minutes before serving so the fruit can release all its flavors.

Pitted, plum easily kept in the freezer.

Preparation plums

Nature, it is sufficient to thoroughly wash to enjoy to the fullest. Pies, clafoutis, crumbles and fars, it easily kitchen with its thin skin which need not be peeled beforehand.

To remove the core, simply cut the fruit in half and at the last minute if the meat will brown.

Salt, plum also goes with white meat.

And to prolong the pleasure all year, it lends both plum jam mixed with tangy fruits like rhubarb, the lemon ororange.

  • Read also: all about the culture of the plum

Sources: (1) Agreste, (2) Kantar Worldpanel 2013 (3) 2013 Ciqual
© Philippe Dufour / Interfel