Illawarra Plum Sauce should be a deep purple colour. The intense colour comes from anthocyanins which are antioxidants and therefore highly beneficial to your health so not only do Illawarra plum products taste great but they are good for you too.
The flavour of Vic Cherikoff’s Illawarra plum sauce is plum-like but with the characteristic resinous pine flavour of the fruits of this coastal rainforest tree (also known as the brown pine plum). To enhance and develop this flavour component, a terrific garnish for any dish finished with Illawarra plum sauce is toasted pine nuts.
Other ingredients which complement the sauce’s flavour profile include chilli, ginger, dark plums, plum wine or spirits, Fruit spice and Alpine pepper. Coconut cream or sour cream can add to the visual presentation impact and also add the enhancing effect of creaminess to the sauce.
The ‘traditional’ use of Illawarra plum sauce is with lamb but it goes equally well with beef, game, poultry, pork, egg dishes and vegetables.
Interestingly, the Australian native food industry is only a few decades old and already we have our swag of charletans making money from the uninformed. So watch out for supermarket sauces alleging to be Illawarra plum sauce but clear in colour. Don’t be fooled.