- 2 tbsp sugar
Honey and syrups made from concentrated fruit juice were the earliest known sweeteners. Today,…
- 2 whole star anise
Star anise is one of the central spices in Chinese cooking. It has a strong anise flavour, with…
- 8 large or 12 small plums, halved
The juiciest fruit in the stone fruit family, plums come in many different varieties, some sweet…
- knob butter
Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…
- 4 Hob Nobs (biscuits)
- custard or vanilla ice cream, to serve
Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Mix the sugar with 2 tbsp water in a baking dish, add the star anise, then pop in the plums, cut-side down. They should fit quite snugly. Dot with the butter. Roast for about 5 mins until the plums are starting to soften on the bottom, then turn them over. Roast for another 5 mins or until tender – this will depend on how ripe your fruit is.
Roughly crush the Hobnobs, then spoon a little on top of each plum half. Return to the oven for a few mins more until the biscuit topping takes on a dark gold colour. Serve the plums and their scented, syrupy juices with custard or ice cream.
Prefer pie?Spice plum and apple tuck: Cut 2 large Bramley apples into large chunks and cook with the plums in a pie dish, sprinkling with a little more butter and sugar. Once the fruit is soft, unroll a pack of ready-to-use shortcrust pastry over the top and tuck the edges in. Cut a few slashes in the top, sprinkle with a little more sugar and bake for 20 mins until golden.