ASIAN PLUM SAUCE
Asian Plum Sauce makes a great unique gift for the foodie in your life. You can use it on meat or mix it with mustard for a dipping sauce for dumplings, fresh spring rolls, tofu or vegetables. It is an extremely versatile condiment to add to your canning repertoire.
6 cups chopped & pitted plums (8 cups un-chopped/un-pitted gives you approximately 6 cups chopped & pitted)
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 cup sugar
1 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon sambal oelek
4 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon fresh ginger
2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
1 Tablespoons minced fresh basil
Place all the ingredients in a large thick bottom pot and bring to a boil untill it reaches 215F. Turn down the heat to medium but make sure the temperature stays the same.
Keep stirring the mixture every so often (I did every 10 minutes or so) for 45 minutes. It will get really thick and glossy looking. During the last 10 minutes, use an immersion hand blender to get rid of any peels or chunks that were left or leave it chunky if you like. Then, laddle sauce into clean/warmed canning jars. Process in hot water bath for 15 minutes, then take the lid off and let sit in water for another 5 minutes.Store in a cool dry place.
One of my favorite herbs is shiso, which is also known as Japanese basil, perilla and beefsteak. It is part of the mint family and has an exotic and alluring taste. You can use it to wrap rice, fish, or in this dressing that is easy and fast to make. It is a little different and a standout for any menu.
8 shiso leaves roughly chopped
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons sugar
1/8 cup sesame oil
½ cup rice wine vinegar
Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until shiso leaves become finely chopped. This dressing goes well over sashimi, boiled or grilled chicken, cucumber salad, as well as steamed or grilled fish and vegetables.