Plum paste

Plum paste



1.In a heavy-based saucepan, cover the plums with water and simmer until they completely soften. Strain them to remove the skin and seeds, pushing the pulp through the sieve. Weigh the plum pulp and add an equal quantity of sugar, bring back to the boil and stir to dissolve.
2.Add lemon juice. Keep this on a brisk simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. Test for setting as you would for jam: put ¼ teaspoon on a cool saucer. If it forms a skin and is no longer runny it is ready. If not, keep cooking until it reaches this stage.
3.Pour into a shallow loaf tin lined with baking paper and refrigerate. Cut into squares and store in an airtight container in the fridge;­ it should last several months.

Using slightly under-ripe plums gives them a higher pectin level, which helps the paste to set.