plum jelly

plum jellyI have fond memories of jelly desserts.  My mom made many jellied salads and aspics – some I liked, some I did not. As a kid, I was always fascinated with the ‘jiggly dessert’. My siblings and I would break it down by whipping it around our bowls or to see who could try to pass it between our teeth without spilling it…I know, gross, but we were kids. Gelatin was once considered a sign of wealth; a sign that the host or hostess had the means to support a kitchen staff.  When gelatin became available commercially it still was a symbol of culinary sophistication.  Preparing a jelly dessert isn’t labour-intensive, but you do need some time for the jelly to set.  Jelly can be served in coupe glasses, small serving bowls, and even ornate tea cups.  If you want to get fancy, flip the jelly out of the dish and onto a plate.  To do this, fill a shallow bowl with boiling water.  Place each jelly bowl in it for a few seconds.  Quickly remove and place the bowl on the plate and lift.  The plum jello should easily pop out.  Use a few of the cooked plums to decorate the plate.   If you like this recipe, then you might enjoy raspberries in chardonnay or panna cotta with raspberry jelly.  These desserts are sure to please even those who don’t have fond memories of jelly.  🙂

you will need

500g (1 lb) plums (quartered and destoned)
150ml (2/3 cup) orange juice
3 strips of orange peel
70g (1/3 cup) sugar
1 packet of gelatine


Place plums in a saucepan and add orange juice, peel and sugar. Set saucepan on high heat and bring to a boil.  Boil for 3 to 5 minutes or until the plums begin to soften. Then add 200ml of water and bring back to a boil. Cook for 2 minutes and remove from heat. Allow to cool at least 20 minutes (longer is better). Strain liquid from the plums. Don’t discard the plums.  Add to a  jar and place in the fridge. The liquid from the plums should be about 450ml (2 cups). If not, top up with water.

To soften the gelatine, place 100ml of boiling water in another bowl and pour the gelatine into it. Stir to combine and dissolve completely. Pour this into the plum liquid and stir. Grab your bowls and pour the liquid evenly. Set in the fridge for at least four hours.

the culinary chase’s note:

The cooked plums are lovely over ice cream or chopped up and mixed in yoghurt. Enjoy!