Why now is the time to go stone mad for stone fruits
10 South African plums, halved and pitted
100g caster sugar
2 star anise
4 sheets of filo pastry
250g ricotta cheese
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 tbsp of date syrup/honey
50g pine nuts
20g poppy seeds
Icing sugar, for dusting
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C, fan oven 180°C, gas mark 6.
2. Put the halved plums into a medium saucepan with 4tbsp water, the sugar, 25g of the butter and the star anise. Cook on a medium to low heat until the plums are poached, about 15 minutes. Cool. Melt the remaining butter.
3. Place the spring-form cake tin on the baking tray and brush both with melted butter. Drape the first sheet of filo pastry over and into the cake tin. Brush the surface with melted butter. Do this with the other three sheets, criss-crossing them so inside of the cake tin is covered, but you have enough hanging over the sides to eventually cover the filling.
4. Mix the ricotta with the vanilla, date syrup and pine nuts. Spread over the bottom of the tin. Remove the star anise from the plums, spoon them evenly into the cake tin.
5. Cover the top of the pie with the hanging filo and brush with melted butter. Bake for 15-20 minutes, then remove the spring-form tin and sprinkle the poppy seeds on top. Bake for another 15-20 minutes until the top is golden. Once cooled, remove the pie from the baking tray and place on a plate for serving. Sprinkle the top with a dusting of icing sugar.