Fall is in the air with cooler nights and beautiful, crisp days. While the seasons may be about to change, we’re not quite ready to give up on summer and its bountiful fruits. So this week’s pie celebrates great late summer stone fruit in a plum frangipane pie.
Frangipane is a nutty pastry cream most commonly made with almonds that pairs especially well with stone fruits. Almonds are in the same plant family as stone fruits like plums, peaches, and apricots. If you can successfully crack open the pit of a peach you’ll see an almond-shaped seed inside and the botanical connection becomes obvious. There’s a great new cookbook by acclaimed author Deborah Madison called Vegetable Literacy that explores this very idea that shared plant families can be a good indicator of interesting flavor combinations. Check it out if you want to learn more about the botanical connections between different fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers; learn some great new recipes; and look at vegetables in a totally new light.
You’ll notice two distinct colors of plums in this week’s pie—that’s because we have two different varieties of plum to share with you. The larger, more red variety comes from a farm we’ve sourced from before: The Big Apple in Wrentham. Their farm stand is incredibly bountiful right now, as they’re still picking peaches and plums and are already harvesting early apples such as Gravensteins and Paula Reds. They’re also bringing in the first Bartlett pears of the season and their pick-you-own fields are open every weekend in the fall!
The smaller, darker plums are the Italian prune plum variety and they come from Lookout Farm in Natick. One of the oldest farms in Massachusetts, Lookout was first farmed in 1650 and the tradition continues today with the Belkin family. The farm is now open daily through the end of October for pick-you-own adventures. They have plums, peaches are hanging in there, and more and more apples and pears are ripening every day!
It’s hard to believe that there will be just one more sweet pie in the share. As a reminder, the last week of the pie share is Tuesday, October 8th. But don’t fret….we’ll be baking well into the fall and winter. As the fall crops come in, we’re gearing up for another round of recipe testing. So stay tuned for updates on opportunities to special order pies after the end of the share.