All year round
After the plum harvest come the prunes especially, as far as we are concerned, those made in the juicy style of South West France. There the plums are gently dried until they are done enough to keep but still juicy and tender enough to eat without soaking. This technique is associated with the region around Agen, hence the name Pruneaux d'Agen. You can usually find them in delicatessens; supermarkets are more likely to have the Californian equivalent which is called a ready-to-eat prune.
The really wrinkly (and to us older) kind of prune is cheaper and keeps for ages in a storage jar but cannot compare for richness of flavour.
For any special occasion, give this traditional classic pud a luxurious twist with the addition of whisky-soaked raisins.
This is the recipe for all those who daren't attempt a souffle: it's supposed to sink! You can freeze both the souffle and sauce and, if you prefer, use port or amaretto instead of French-inspired Armagnac for the prunes.
Wintry comfort food at its best - this French classic feature pork, prunes, apples and spices with a crisp potato topping. All you need to serve it with is some seasonal greens or winter carrots.
A flavour of Christmas here - a chocolate log with a wonderful filling of chocolate mousse and prunes in Armagnac. It would also make the most impressive dessert - minus the holly! - at any time of the year.
There's something wintry about these lovely light jellies - the cider, dried fruits and cider syllabub all combine to create a great taste sensation, indulgent enough to serve at a special-occasion dinner.
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