If you give Emily a quart of plums...
If you give Emily a quart of plums, she will sigh contently as she leaves the roadside stand to pack them into the backseat of the car, pleased that she now has produce fresh from the farm.
The bag of squishy plums will cause her to think of the peaches she and her family would purchase when returning home from the beach. She will remember the unrivaled sweetness of Chilton County peaches.
As she thinks of the super-sweet, juicy peaches, she will recall how quickly they turned from soft and luscious and fragrant to mushy and bruised and rotten. She will then worries about the plums she just bought. How long will they last? What to do with them all?
Picturing a quart of spoiled fruit will spur Emily to contemplate making a cobbler or a pie. But she will quickly dismiss that idea since neither she nor her husband care for non-chocolate desserts.
But cobbler will make her think of ice cream, and ice cream will make her think of yogurt, specifically Greek yogurt. It will only naturally happen, then, that her mind will wanders to honey. She will bolt upright in the car. Honey, that's it! Honey roasted rosemary plums with onions and artichokes.
When she arrives home, she will begin to prepare dinner. As she tosses the artichokes with the honey and olive oil, she will see Dan's disgusted expression. So for him, she will decide to add sausage to cancel out the artichokes.
After eating the roasted plums, she will realize that she still has hardly made a dent in her stash. She will deem it prudent to slice several of the plums to freeze for smoothies. Then she will determine that it only makes sense to prepare Dan a smoothie to bring into work for his breakfast for the next day.
All this hard work involving plum stewardship will make her plum tired. So she will convince Dan that she deserves a massage as they watch Mad Men (Actually, this happens every night.). Of course, receiving a massage, watching forty-six minutes of television, and saying goodnight to her husband will lead her to work up an appetite again.
She will eye her fruit basket and realize that she cannot select a tender, perfectly shaped plum because she cooked or froze the entire quart. She will want to wake her sleeping husband up to convince him that they must return to the roadside stand located an hour and a half outside of town so that they can buy more plums. But she will restrain herself from doing so by watching an episode of Beautiful People on instant stream Netflix and eating chocolate zucchini bread instead. The following day when she suggests to Dan that they venture out to obtain non-frozen, non-cooked plums, he will look at her like she has two heads and wish that he had never agreed to buy the damn fruit in the first place.
Now he knows better.
At least a nice side dish resulted from this saga. Dan remarked that the vegetables and fruit had a good flavor and were nicely seasoned, and roasting proved an effective method for enjoying and disguising the misshapen, less-than-perfect plums in the batch.
Honey Roasted Plums with Onions and Artichokes
6 plums, quartered
1 onion, sliced
1/2 can artichoke hearts packed in water, rinsed and drained
1 t. honey
1/8 c. balsamic vinegar
1 t. rosemary
1 T. olive oil
sea salt, to taste
pepper, to taste
splash of vegetable stock or broth
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Spread plums, artichokes and onions onto a 9 X 13 glass baking dish and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Drizzle with honey and balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with rosemary. Roast for about 30-35 minutes or until tender and golden brown (the onions will not be fully caramelized but should be soft and have some color on the edges). About halfway through cooking, move the contents around the pan with a fork, flipping and turning the pieces so that the opposite sides are exposed. Splash the bottom of the pan with just enough stock to cover the bottom of the pan.