In the end I went with a recipe published by Maggie Beer in Maggie’s Harvest. I chose this recipe for the very simple reason that it has comparatively few ingredients and I had all of them in my pantry.
Maggie says that her recipe is adapted from one found in the Barossa Cookery Book, a very famous South Australian cookbook first published during World War One in aid of the South Australian Soldiers’ Fund. I have my own dog-eared copy and it’s a great little cook book.
Given the German heritage of the Barossa region, this recipe is for a European rather than an Asian-style plum sauce. But with its lovely tangy flavour and deep red colour when made with blood plums, it would taste great served with any fatty or gamey meat, no matter what the cuisine.
Maggie says that the recipe makes one litre of sauce but I found it made almost double that quantity.
- 3 kg blood plums
- 1 x 60 g piece ginger
- 500g onions, chopped
- 2 large cloves garlic, sliced
- extra virgin olive oil, for cooking
- 1.25 kg sugar
- 500 ml red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Halve the plums, leaving the stones intact.
- Bruise ginger with the flat blade of a large knife.
- Gently fry onions, garlic and ginger in a little olive oil in a large preserving pan until softened and the onions are translucent.
- Add remaining ingredients and cook for about 30 minutes or until plums are well cooked and mushy.
- Strain the sauce, pour into hot sterilised bottles and seal.