Labor Day, the unofficial close of summer, is this weekend. As we say good-bye to vacation and endless days at the beach, it is also almost time to say good-bye to summer fruits. Plums are in season until the end of September, so they are the perfect fruit to incorporate into your Labor Day party menus. Your skin will thank you!
Plums are a good source vitamins A and C which help reduce wrinkles, improve skin texture and support collagen production. They are also rich in antioxidants having almost the same amount of antioxidants per serving as strawberries. Plums are a great source of dietary fiber. Fiber is important in ridding the body of harmful toxins by “escorting” them through the digestive tract.
Not sure where to start? Check out our Pinterest for dessert, salad and main course recipes with plums.
Plums come in range of rich hues from light greens and yellows to dark reds and purples. For the highest level of antioxidants, look for the deep purple and red hues. Plums should be plump, smooth and well colored. Ripe plums yield to gentle pressure and have an inviting aroma. Firmer plums will ripen and soften at home. If you are going to be using plums in cooking, choose ones that are just on the firm side of ripe.
Keep unripe plums at room temperature to ripen. Ripe plums can be refrigerated for a few days (allow them to reach room temperature before eating). Plums freeze well; halve and remove the stones first to prevent the flavor from being impaired.
Plums should be washed before use. The skin generally has a sharper flavor than the flesh, however, it is often best to leave it on because it provides good fiber content and health benefiting anti-oxidant pigments. For mellower, sweeter flavor, plums can be easily skinned as you would a tomato (cut a small cross in the skin and blanch in boiling water for 10 seconds before peeling).
Roasting, stewing or poaching are all excellent cooking methods.
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