Prune Recipes

Announcing the first (and only)…

Prune Blogging Thursday
October 27th
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This week Meg and I went to the Salon Fermiers here in Paris. Similar to a trade show, the exhibition hall was filled with food producers selling everything from chestnut honey, fleur de sel, foie gras, artisan goat cheeses, and wines from various regions close to Paris.

But what we loved most was the prunes.
When I tell visitors to France that they must try the pruneaux de Agen (prunes from Agen) they snicker. Why do prunes have such a bad rap? Prunes are very good for your health; they’re high in iron, with no added sugar but lots of fiber…and yes, they keep you, um, ‘regular’.

These prunes from Agen were amazing and I was later sorry I only bought one bag. They were moist, plump, and super sweet, with hints of chocolate and spices. We both later wondered how we could get more for this particular producer.

There are close to 3 million plum trees in the southwest region of France, known as Gascony. The finest plum for drying is called the prune d’Ente, a variety that’s better dried than fresh. The first time I had pruneaux d’Agen was when I visited my friend Kate, who happens to live adjacent to Agen, the veritable kingdom of prunes, where prune-lovers from ’round the world congregate to enjoy the world’s best prunes.

The French adore prunes and in fact, after California, France holds the second spot in world prune production. When I visited Gascony Kate, we went to a Prune Museum…and I say “a”(meaning not singular) museum, as there’s more than one in Agen.
One even had a gift shop featuring a comic book super-hero who was prune-fueled!

(And, no, I’m not making that up…)

Prunes have borne the long-suffering brunt of poopy jokes in addition to the recent humiliation of being re-named dried plums, vexing recipe writers everywhere.
You tell me, does dried plum juice sound as appetizing as prune juice?
And how many times have you heard the integrity of prunes denigrated as a snickering joke?

It’s Time To Give Prunes Their Due!

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With a nod of inspiration to Wine-Blogging Wednesdays, let’s devote a day to prunes…the moist, wrinkled little nubbins deserve another glorious day in the sun.

So give us your best prune recipe or best idea for using prunes.

Mash some prunes into ice cream, bake prunes in a savory tagine, poach ’em with some kumquats, or chop them up and beat them into a chocolate chip cookie batter. Stew them with Armagnac, toss them in a seasonal autumn salad with crisp Fuyu persimmons, or make prune enchiladas (…er, on second thought…)
Use your imagination to create something prune-tacular!

UPDATE: Here they are, the prune recipe round-up!

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11 comments

  • October 16, 2005 5:38pm

    oooOOOooooo! I love prunes. I love prune juice.

    I shall take on this challenge with great er… pruniness?

  • October 16, 2005 10:04pm

    Um…put them in chocolate souffle? Oh darn, that ideda was already taken.

  • Gail
    October 17, 2005 10:56am

    No recipe, but I did buy French prunes at my farmer’s market yesterday and thought of you. I’ll eat them today and think of you again.

  • October 17, 2005 12:55pm

    Prunes? Seriously?

    David, dahling, how many times have I told you not to betray your age? Huh, sweetheart?

    xx
    P

  • judy witts
    October 17, 2005 1:32pm

    how about my wild boar stew with prunes and chocolate!!!
    YEAH BABE!!!

  • Judith in Umbria
    October 19, 2005 5:09am

    Have looked and looked, but have only found wild bores lately.
    Prunes, secondo me, are fine as they come, don’t need enhancement, but I might be tempted to stuff a couple with those chocolate kisses…
    or gorgonzola dolce.

  • October 22, 2005 7:49am

    I just returned from J Detou and my wallet is much lighter thanks to your pruneaux de Agen! 18 euros later i am still in sticker shock but oh my god they are incredible!

  • Ash
    October 22, 2005 11:04am

    There’s a recipe in the October Good Food (UK) using prunes!

  • October 24, 2005 1:46pm

    Amusingly, I posted this entry just last week.

    http://www.tgr.com/weblog/archives/000477.html

    Enjoy. And, great idea!

  • Susan
    October 26, 2005 10:16pm

    Our family favorite dish that calls for prunes, is a Coq au vin recipe, found in Jane Brody’s “Good Food Gourmet”

  • jobeth_b
    February 6, 2010 4:12am

    Roast pork with prunes, dried apricots and toasted hazelnuts