Cinnamon and Vanilla Plum Butter
Crockpot Plum Butter Infused with Ceylon Cinnamon and Vanilla Bean
If you’ve ever had a plum tree, you know the predicament that comes with it. The plums are so divine when picked directly from the branches and savored immediately—slightly warmed by the sun, succulent and sweet on the inside, with tart skin and juices that undoubtedly drip down your chin as you sink your teeth into this late summer fruit. But, they all ripen at once and you can only eat so many while they are fresh. So what is one to do with dozens of pounds of plums?
If you’re like me, you’ve tried it all—jams, jellies, pies, sauces, cordials, even wine. One of my family’s favorite plum creations, though, is a simple plum butter, livened up with Ceylon cinnamon and vanilla bean.
It isn’t overly sweet like many plum creations, but the cinnamon definitely brings out the natural sugars from the plums and vanilla provides the perfect balance for the acidity in the fruit.
I not only love this recipe for the flavorful end product but for the way it makes my home smell. Since it is slow-cooked in a crockpot with the lid cracked, the ingredients meld together into fragrant steam that contributes a sweet comforting scent that lingers in the air for days.
I also love the ease of this recipe. Sure, the overall time is rather lengthy, but it is mostly hands-off. The ingredients are simply dumped into a crockpot and forgotten for several hours at a time, before pulverizing them into a paste in the same pot it cooks in. Then, the “butter” is left for several more hours until it has reached a thick, paste-like consistency.
Keep us posted on what you used your cinnamon plum butter on!
Vanilla Bean and Cinnamon Infused Plum Butter
- 8 pounds plums, pits removed and sliced
- 2 Ceylon cinnamon sticks
- Seeds and pods of 2 vanilla beans
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons fresh-grated nutmeg
- Teaspoon salt
- Place all ingredients in an 8-quart slow cooker and cook for 2-4 hours. When plums are soft enough, you will use a potato masher to crush the plums.
- Cook for another 4 hours.
- Remove the cinnamon sticks.
- Use an immersion blender to purée the plum mixture into a smooth consistency and return the cinnamon sticks to the purée.
- Cook for another 6-10 hours with the lid cracked. At this point, take a taste. If your plums were rather tart, you might need to stir in more maple syrup to sweeten it a bit. You can also stir in another teaspoon or so of ground cinnamon if you want a bit more spice. Or you can leave as is. I like my plum butter a little tart to contrast other sweet, salty, or creamy items.
Serving Suggestions and Storage
Serve on toasted English muffins, slather on your morning toast, or stir a couple of tablespoons into a bowl of oatmeal or grits. For a decadent breakfast treat, smear mascarpone on toast and top with the plum butter and some freshly grated nutmeg. It’s also great over vanilla bean ice cream!
Keep in the refrigerator for up to a month, freeze, or can it using a water bath.