Thursday 20 July 2017

Plum and Ginger Layer Jars

At this time of year I love nothing more than taking a picnic to a park or field, eating al fresco with good company and enjoying the gloriously sunny weather (when mother nature decides, that is.) 

There's something just that little bit more exciting about picnic food, even if it is a plain old sandwich, it somehow manages to have more appeal when dining outside. Perhaps it's the al fresco aspect of things (bit of a mouthful to say) that reminds me of holidaying abroad. When lunching with the sea breeze through my hair on the beach, or sitting in a little moonlit bistro by night gives me those lovely memories back in blighty, sat on my picnic rug and all I have is the slightly damp grass between my toes, not sand, sadly - wishful thinking eh?! 

If the picnic isn't a last minute thought, I don't know about you but I like to put a bit of effort into these things, or maybe it is just because I'm a foodie and more importantly, that I like to impress and show off my picnic goodies, basically trying to outdo each other with what we've all brought to the table (or picnic rug, quite literally.) 

This is where my plum and ginger layer jars come in. The perfect transportable dessert, all you have to do is layer them up in jam jars, store in the fridge or cool bag until ready to transport to destination, unscrew lid and tuck in, given you've remembered to pack some spoons as well. You'll have to some pretty disappointed people to contend with otherwise. 

I said that if the picnic isn't a last minute thought then I like to put in the effort, although in fact, these layer jars are incredibly quick to make, so you could make these in a matter of minutes, probably just as quick as it takes to make your sandwich. There really is no excuse now for not having these as your next picnic dessert. All that's left to do is make sure you buy some gorgeously ripe plums (and currently coming into season from August f.y.i !!)  or if you're impatient and don't want to wait for them to be at their most ripe, you'll need to add an extra 2 tbsp of caster sugar in with your fruit when heating up. 

Note: The measurements below are all approximates because this is quite a relaxed recipe unlike baking a cake, you can switch and change the ingredients around if you have more of one thing or another, for example, you can use more nuts and less cookie crumble, or more fruit and less cream, it's just a simple guide really as to how I made mine! 

Plum and Ginger Layer Jars

Makes 4-6 depending on the jar size


4 ripe plums, stoned (about 320g weighed/ just under 2 cups)
10g light brown sugar (about 1 tbsp)
80g natural yoghurt (about 5 tbsp)
225g double cream (about 1 cup)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp icing sugar
80g stem ginger cookies (about 3 cookies)
20g hazelnuts (about 1/4 cup)
30g pistachios (about 1/4 cup)
handful of fresh mint leaves


Slice the stoned plums into small segments and place into a small saucepan with the brown sugar. Heat slowly over a low heat until they just begin to soften and release juices into the dissolved sugar, don't let the plums turn to mush and loose their shape completely. Take the fruit off the heat, transfer to a bowl to cool completely. 

In another bowl, gently whip the yoghurt, cream, vanilla and icing sugar together until soft peaks form. Leave aside. 

Put the cookies into a plastic food bag, seal and with a rolling pin bash them until the cookie crush to a crumble like mixture. 

Chop the nuts into small pieces and finely chop the mint leaves. To assemble the jars, spoon the cream mixture into a piping bag to allow for ease of layering. Start with a layer of piped cream between the jars, top with a layer of cooled plums, a sprinkle of crushed biscuit, a few chopped nuts and mint. Then repeat layering in this process until you have filled the jars completely and you have used up all your ingredients. 


  1. GOD, these pictures just made me have these in my tummy. They are so damn delicious, hope they will turn out good for me too, please wish me luck.

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