Dusty Road Plum Soup with Roasted Plums and Plum Tart
- Plum Ice Cream
- Heavy (whipping) cream - 2 cups
- Half-and-half - 1/2 cup
- Egg Yolks - 8
- Sugar - 1 cup
- Plums - 1-1/2 pounds, fresh, pitted and coarsely chopped
- Dry white wine - 1/2 cup
- Granulated Sugar - 3/4 cup
- Plum Soup
- Ginger - 1/4 cup, sliced, fresh
- Bay Leaf - 1
- Whole Peppercorns - 2 teaspoons
- Allspice - 1 teaspoon, whole
- Whole Cloves - 1
- Cinnamon Stick - One, 3-inch piece
- Nutmeg - 11/8 teaspoon, ground
- Star anise pods - 2
- Plums - 2 pounds, pitted and coarsely chopped
- Dry white wine - 2-1/2 cups
- Sugar - 1/2 cup, granulated
- Roasted Plums
- Plums - 6, halved, pitted, and quartered
- Cinnamon - 1 teaspoon, ground
- Sugar - 1 tablespoon, granulated
- Plum Tarts
- Hazelnuts - 1/2 cup (2-1/2 ounces), toasted and peeled
- All-Purpose Flour - 1/2 cup plus 1-1/2 tablespoons, unbleached
- Unsalted Butter - 4 tablespoons, at room temperature
- Confectioner’s Sugar - 1/3 cup, sifted
- Pinch of kosher salt
- Plums - 3, pitted and cut into very thin slices
- Heavy (whipping) cream - 1/2 cup
- Confectioner’s Sugar - 2 tablespoons, sifted
- Malt sugar for dusting
- Fresh mint leaves
To make the ice cream: In a heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the cream and half-and-half to a boil. Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks with the sugar in a medium bowl until light and fluffy, 6 to 8 minutes. Slowly whisk some of the hot cream mixture into the egg yolks, then add the egg yolks to the hot cream mixture and cook over medium heat for 8 minutes, or until the mixture begins to boil and is thick enough to coat a spoon. Remove from heat, cover, and chill in the refrigerator.
In a medium saucepan, combine the plums, wine, and sugar and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook until the plums are tender and most of the liquid has evaporated, 10 to 15 minutes. Puree the mixture and strain through a fine-meshed sieve. Let cool for 30 minutes. Add the plum puree to the chilled custard mixture. Freeze in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Store in an airtight container in the freezer. Makes 3 cups.
To make the spice sachet: Cut a 6-inch square of cheesecloth and place the ginger, bay leaf, peppercorns, allspice, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, and star anise in the center. Tie into a bag with white cotton string and leave one string about 12 inches long.
To make the soup: In a medium non-aluminum saucepan, combine the plums, wine, sugar, and spice sachet and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer slowly, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is reduced to a soft sauce, about 2 hours. You will have about 4 cups of soup. Puree the mixture in a blender, press through a fine-meshed sieve, cover, and chill until ready to use.
To make the roasted plums: Preheat the oven to 275 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil and place the plums on the sheet, skin-side up. Combine the cinnamon and sugar and reserve 2 tablespoons. Sprinkle the remainder over the plums and bake them for about 2 hours, or until the pieces are tender and caramelized but still hold their shape.
To make the tarts: Preheat the oven to 400 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or butter it. In a blender or food processor, grind the hazelnuts with the 1-1/2 tablespoons flour for about 15 seconds. Blend in the 1/2 cup plus 1-1/2 tablespoons flour and remove the mixture to a small bowl. Process the butter and sugar until smooth, 5 to 10 seconds. Add the egg yolk and blend again for 5 seconds. Add the hazelnut mixture and pulse four times, just until mixed; do not over-process the dough.
Remove the dough to a lightly floured work surface and gather it together with your fingers. Press it into a log shape and divide it into six 2-inch balls. Place each ball between two sheets of plastic wrap and roll into a 1/4-inch-thick circle. Remove one of the sheets of plastic and cut the dough into six 3-1/2-inch circles. Invert each circle onto the prepared pan. Using one half of a plum for each circle, spiral plum slices on top of each tart, then sprinkle lightly with 1 teaspoon of the reserved cinnamon sugar. Bake the tarts until the bottoms are lightly browned, 6 to 8 minutes.
To serve: In a deep bowl, whip the cream with the confectioner’s sugar until stiff peaks form. Spoon the whipped cream into a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip. Ladle about 2/3 cup of soup into each of six shallow soup plates. Arrange some of the roasted plums, skin-side down, around the edges. Pipe a rosette of whipped cream into the center of each serving and top with one of the plum tarts. Place small scoops of plum ice cream between the roasted plums in each bowl of soup, dust with malt sugar, and garnish with a mint leaf.