On recent trip to the Oxfordshire countryside with my sister we chanced upon a tree laden with small, round, bright red plums ripe for picking. Not one to shun a free fruit bounty we hoisted ourselves into its sturdy bows and helped ourselves to a hatful of plums (literally a hat full. A straw-coloured trilby, to be precise).
Most of them were swiftly scrubbed, stoned and frozen to await their fate – plum wine perhaps or maybe more plum jerkum trials – but as my sister is partial to a drop of fruity liqueur some of them were plunged straight into a bottle of vodka to introduce their wild ways to the spirit world. And rather than a straight plum liqueur we fancied developing some more interesting flavours to enhance their fruitiness. So we spun the spice wheel of fortune and landed upon cardamom. And now we’re sharing the recipe with you…
Our easy wild plum and cardamom liqueur recipe
Weigh out around 500g of plums. The wilder the better. (But we won’t tell if you get some President plums from the supermarket and pretend you found them in a far flung hedge). Give them a scrub and roughly chop in half. You don’t need to remove the stones – these will impart mellow, almond flavours to the final drink.
Grab yourself around 20 green cardamom pods and crack them open with a lusty blow of something solid. Scrape out the seeds and discard the pods. Put the plums and cardamom seeds into a jar with a tight fitting lid and cover with a 70cl bottle of vodka. To this add around 220g white sugar. Seal the lid and give the jar a good shake. Repeat shakes over the course of a week should dissolve the sugar. Set the jar aside, preferably somewhere cool and dark, for three months, giving it a few more shakes from time to time. Strain, bottle, drink. And it may just send you wild.