Aussie bush foods: Davidson plums

Aussie bush foods: Davidson plums

There are four varieties of Davidson plum or Orray , which grow in far tropical north of Australia to northern New South Wales.  Two types are commercially cultivated.

They are a dark purple fruit sprouting in grape-like clusters from its narrow, straight trunk. Harvesting requires no more effort than picking the plums from beneath the tree once they’ve ripened and fallen off.

The fruits are 3cm to 6cm in diameter with a blood-red flesh with either one or two seeds. Even when fully ripe, they’re highly acidic.

They have 100 times the vitamin C found in oranges and also contain lutein, a compound that plays

Davidson plums store well in the fridge for a couple of days but they also freeze extremely well. In fact it’s more common to buy them frozen than fresh, due in part to the short season, which lasts only from December to January.

Their sourness means you have to be generous with the sugar.

We suggest them in place of or as an accompaniment to rhubarb or quince, or in jams or pickles.

Just cut the flesh off and stew with sugar and reduce right down. They give a sauce the most beautiful, deep maroon colour.“

There’s no need to remove the skins, ,just takes out the seeds and slices the fruit in half.  As well as using them in tarts and cakes, Olive also adds Davidson plums to savoury dishes; they make a good accompaniment to meat. “I might use the plums as sauce with kangaroo or beef – or make a jus and add some pepperberry,” he says.