For those who read the last blog about the plums, I neglected to talk about the mulberries that also grow on Michael’s farm at Plenty.  He has several trees full of them and they are the best I’ve seen in decades, truly – bursting with juice and full of flavour.

Now I don’t normally bottle mulberries (as by the Fowlers type method) – any berry for that matter, as the seeds tend to slip between the lid and rim of the jar, even go under the rubber ring and the seal soon is broken and the berries spoiled. I much prefer to freeze them.

On this particular occasion, Michael and I were discussing the virtues and characteristics of various types of plums and Robert was left to pick the mulberries.  The trees were so laden however, that after only a few minutes, he’d picked over 3 kilos.

Between the plums and the mulberries we were very happy with out bounty and headed for home.

Next day was the scheduled Bottling class and I decided for morning tea to modify a recipe in my book “Sweet!” to incorporate the mulberries.  The recipe is for Monkey Bun.  Instead of adding sultanas to the dough, I wrapped walnut sized balls of dough around two mulberries, then dipped them in caramel, layered them in a ring tin and left them to rise.  Once baked and turned out,  I was really pleased with the result – toffee coated buns filled with the burst of semi-sweet mulberry.

The first photo here is what the regular Monkey Bun normally looks like, complete with the sultanas in the dough.  The second is the mulberry version half devoured (it was eaten so quickly that the photo of the bun straight from the oven wasn’t possible). People each pull a little bun from the whole with two forks – the caramel follows it to the plate in a lovely, sticky stream.

I now double the caramel in the Monkey Bun recipe in “Sweet!” – the single amount is adequate, but I figure more is better when it comes to luscious buttery caramel.

Quite carried away with the mulberries by now I decided to adapt another recipe to use more of the mulberries (there weren’t going to be too many left to freeze at this rate). I will put this recipe in another post in a few minutes.


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