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Feb 10, 2011 08:03 AM

Ideas for Dried Plums

I work in a food pantry and we have some dried plums that are just sitting on the shelf, they never get chosen. I suspect that there is still a "prune" stigma even though the package says "Dried Pitted Plums". We want to hand out idea cards with the plums, to give shoppers an idea of how they can be used. What recipe ideas do you all have for dried plums AKA prunes?

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  1. I like them very much with inexpensive cuts of red meat that are often braised. Beef or lamb, but perhaps you all don't have much meat at the food pantry? This time of year groceries put such cheap cuts on sale periodically, so that might be a suggestion, to look at the weekly ads for appropriate recommendations. I put the prunes in during the last half hour of cooking, usually along with carrots, because I don't like them mushy. We can make this stretch into several meals in our small household, over some mashed potatoes, and the last of the meat on sandwiches after a couple days.

    3 Replies
    1. re: amyzan

      they're really good with braised turkey leg and with roast pork, too.

      1. re: sunshine842

        We don't eat pork, but I'll try the turkey leg. Thanks!

      2. re: amyzan

        We do have meat at the pantry, but we never know what kind we are going to get. It's great to hear that it goes well with the meats we get most frequently. (beef, pork, turkey/chicken)

      3. I love those things; silly that they needed to be renamed in the first place.

        Anyway, no particular recipes but I use them in baked goods in place of raisins (cut into bits), in pilafs, and in chicken/pork dishes as part of a sauce, mixed with other dried fruit and savory flavors for balance. Or straight from the pantry when I need a glucose boost.

        1. Pioneer Woman has a recipe for a prune cake she says her husband loves.

          1 Reply
          1. re: ann_l

            I have made that cake several times and it is great! I do halve the frosting and replace half of the oil with applesauce, though.

          2. Chicken Marbella...Here is a link to a lowfat version, but the original recipe is all over the internet

              1. re: todao

                Mm-m, one of my favorites as well. I'm not sure if I like the Duff or the rum sauce more, though.

                For the OP - Prunes suffered a serious loss of face in the last ten years or so; the reasons are pretty obvious as generations and perceptions of food products changed. Paulj's comment about donating them to a senior center clearly points to the basic image problem prunes had. Some marketing genius at the California Prune Board decided to reinvent the product, spending 10 mil in the process, hence the change in name from prunes to dried plums. Aside from the fact that that's exactly what they are in the first place, dried plums, the renaming and the subsequent marketing efforts resulted in a upswing in consumer interest, although the stigma obviously still exists in the minds of some. "People have told us that dried plums evoke a more positive 'fresh fruit goodness' image. They've said they're more likely to eat dried plums than prunes," said Richard Peterson, executive director of the California Prune Board. But he had no plans to rename his group the California Dried Plum Board." - CNN

                Greygarious has a good point, calamari sounds light years better than squid. Ridiculous, sure, but perceived image is everything in the eyes of the consumer.

                I love prunes. Just as much as dried plums.

                Saute well seasoned inexpensive chicken thighs in olive oil until well browned, toss in a diced shallot or two, or a onion, a few smashed garlic cloves, and a sliced red bell pepper, add a handful of pitted prunes, fresh orange juice or thawed frozen orange juice concentrate for more intense flavor, orange zest, chicken stock and fresh or dried thyme, simmer until chicken is tender, remove and reduce sauce until slightly thickened. Serve with a simple rice pilaf or couscous, and a nice green salad.

                Recipe adapted and paraphrased by me from the original by Marian Burros.