I had the immense luck to come into entirely too many plums. And not just any plum….satsuma plums.
You know when you’re at the Farmer’s Market and you see plums, and you’re like, “I hope those are the plums that are red inside”? And then you bite into it and it’s yellow inside. You’re not really upset, but you’re a little disappointed. Because you want the plums that are red inside. Somehow, they feel more…plummish.
Well, that plum with the ruby red insides? That’s a satsuma plum. And it’s dark red, juicy fruit and small pit make it perfect for canning. It ripens in late July to early August, but be warned: when it comes to bear, it comes all at once. And that lovely little red gem is only good for a scant few weeks. Which is why no matter how much you hope for the red fleshed plum when you bite into it, you’re more likely to get a golden-flesh variety.
But me? I’ve got about 70 pounds of satsuma plums thanks to a lovely couple who live next door to a friend of mine. We showed up at their house and my kids (2 and 7) set ladders next to the tree, climbed up and started tossing the fruits this way and that. Within 45 minutes we had plucked a good half of the tree. We’ve been pawning plums off to our friends ever since. Luckily I had enough energy to get a few good recipes in. Starting with plum pie filling.
Canned Plum Pie Filling
makes three quart jars
7 pounds satsuma plums, pitted and cut into eighths
4 cups sugar
4 TBSP lemon juice, strained
1.5 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
- Sterilize your jars and lids.
- Combine plums, three cups of sugar and lemon juice in a large bowl. Toss gently to combine. Let stand at room temperature for 1-2 hours.
- Set a colander over your preserving pot and drain the plums so that the juices are collected in your preserving pot.
- Return plums to bowl and mix with remaining one cup sugar, cinnamon and cloves. Set aside.
- Bring plum syrup to a boil over high heat, stirring frequently.
- Pack the plum preserves into hot, sterilized jars, leaving 1.5 inch head space. Ladle hot syrup into jars, being sure to release the air bubbles, until there’s 1/2 inch headspace.
- Wipe the rims and seal the jar.
- Process in a boiling water bath for twenty-five minutes (start counting once the water has reached a boil), more depending on altitude.