It is always a mistake to send the Husband to the supermarket without an itemised list. As he disappeared though the front door l shouted the word ‘FRUIT’ at him whilst trying to stop the Boy eating cat food. On his return l scoured the bags for the usual weekly selection of apples, kiwis, bananas and possibly a mango, only to discover a net full of ‘honey oranges’ and a head-sized bunch of what could only be described as oval persimmons. The sticky label on this mystery fruit said, quite simply, ‘Plum’.
Never one for turning down a new taste experience, as well as being subject to a ravenous pregnancy based hunger that yesterday saw me mainlining BK fries as if l had not eaten in weeks, l popped one in my mouth. The skin was persimmon thick and tart, but the soft flesh was sweet and juicy. I ate several more, pondering what to do with the copious amount of fruit that now sat on our kitchen table. Only one thing sprung to mind – a crumble.
Crumbles are my favourite dessert. There is something about buttery sweet clods melting into a slight tart stewed fruit, perhaps with some custard, that makes me feel warm on the inside. Not entirely befitting for tropical heat, but hey, thats why air-con was invented, right?
So this morning saw me rubbing flour and butter together – l use more butter as l like a bit of a melty stodgy crumble – and mixing in some brown sugar to create a caramel scented crumble mix. At the same time l simmered the ‘plums’ with a little sugar, water and allspice. The skins separated from the flesh, so before assembling the dessert for the oven l blitzed the fruit with a blender. Once in their baking dishes, they baked in the oven for 10 minutes until the tops were golden. Or a little sunburnt in a couple of cases.
They were tasty. Damn tasty. Tart and sweet, a tropical version of a traditional plum crumble. Something l would make again if l (a) could identify the fruit and/or (b) knew how to ask for it in Thai. I am not sure that ‘it looks like a persimmon and tastes a bit like a plum’ will cut it somehow. Anyway, if you can’t get hold of these so-called ‘plums’ any fruit will do. Oh, but not banana, l tried that once. Disaster.