Apriums? Plumcots? Apriplums? What the heck is going on in the produce aisle?
You might be more familiar with pluots, another marriage between apricots and plums. Pluots have a stronger plum taste than apriplums or apriums and are, generally, more common, thanks to Luther Burbank and Floyd Zaiger, according to a report by National Public Radio.
One question: Why bother creating a new fruit?
There are several reasons: Adventure; the chance to market a new product; the possibility of creating a fruit that is more resistent to pests, disease and drought.
Visit your local farmers market and conduct a taste test between plums, apricots and pluots to see which one you like best. Check out the Larkspur farmers market at Marin Country Mart every Saturday, from 9 a.m. to noon, and the Corte Madera farmers market at the Town Center every Wednesday, from noon to 5 p.m.
So, what do you do with a pluot? Pretty much the same thing you'd do with a plum or an apricot.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
3 pounds firm pluots, peeled and cut into eighths, seeds discarded
1/2 cup water
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
7-1/2 cups sugar
3 ounces pectin
Preparation: Place peeled and cut pluots, water, and lemon juice in a large non-aluminum stockpot. Stirring often, bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fruit is soft. You should end up with about 4-1/2 cups.
Stir in sugar. Return heat to high and bring back to a rolling boil while constantly stirring. Add pectin and return to a boil while stirring. Continue to stir and boil for 1 minute, then remove from heat. Let rest for 1 minute, then skim off any foam.
Pour even amounts into sterilized jars, leaving 1/8-inch of space at the top. Wipe rims and seal with sterilized lids. Process in boiling water for 5 minutes. Remove, let cool, and label jars. Store pluot jam in a cool, dry place.
Yield: 4 pints jam
— Recipe courtesy of Marin Country Mart Farmers Market