Port Poached Plums

  • 6-8 plums
  • 400ml port
  • 50-100g sugar
  • 2″ cinnamon stick
  • 2 star anise

Preparation:

1. Put the port, 50g sugar, cinnamon & star anise into a sauce pan & bring to a simmer to dissolve the sugar.

2. Cut the plums in half & remove the stones.

3. Place the fruit into the syrup, I usually start with the cut side down but as long as they are all the same way it doesn’t matter too much. If the liquid does not almost cover the plums then add a little water.

4. Keep the liquid barely simmering to poach the plums really gently. The cooking time will depend on their ripeness.

5. After about 5 minutes turn the fruit over & keep poaching until they are soft. Use a sharp knife to test them. You should feel a little resistance but not much. If you are unsure just make a couple more than you need & taste them to see when they are ready. Remove them from the liquid & place on a plate or something to cool.

6. Once the plums are all out of the port turn up the heat to boil the liquid to thicken it. At this point it may need more sugar. That is up to your taste really. Let the liquid boil down until it is almost thick enough & then test the flavour. If it needs more sugar add it now & continue to boil until the port has formed a thick syrup. You can strain it at this point to remove the spices and any pieces of plum which have broken off or just leave it a bit rustic.Portuguese Custard Tart Recipe

To serve, peel the plums once they are cool & pour some syrup over them. These are great with the custard tart & if you have any leftovers they go well with yogurt or ice cream & a few chopped nuts.