Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Looking to cut back on sugar in the New Year? Try prunes !

As Big Ben chimes in the New Year tomorrow night, lots of us will be promising to make an effort to eat more healthily and up our fruit and veg intake while reducing the quantity of sugar in our diets. These recipes from California Prunes landed in my inbox earlier and they tick all the right boxes.

Prune & Mango Smoothie

The perfect pick-me-up after a night out on the town. Prunes are a source of vitamin B which helps reduce tiredness and fatigue. Whip up this smoothie to put a spring back in your step !

Ingredients :

5 (50g) California prunes roughly chopped
1 orange
1 mango stoned, peeled and chopped
100g low fat natural yoghurt
200ml semi-skimmed milk

Instructions :

Grate the rind of the orange then cut off the peel and cut into segments – do this over a bowl to catch the juice.

Place the orange rind and segments in a liquidiser with the remaining ingredients, including the juice, and whiz until smooth.

Pour into 2 glasses and drink immediately.

Low Sugar California Prune Cake

Feeling the pinch after a little Christmas over-indulgence? Have your cake and eat it too as this cake has twice the taste and half the calories and California prunes have low GI and natural slow release of energy.


650g California Prunes
10oz Butter
750g Evaporated Milk
5oz Plain Flour
5oz Wholemeal Flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 heaped tablespoon chunky low sugar marmalade


Line an 8 Inch (20cm) square cake tin on the base and sides with baking parchment. You'll need extra to cover the top.

Place California Prunes in a large pan, Add evaporated milk and butter. Bring everything to the boil stirring frequently to stop it sticking. When boiling turn down heat and simmer for 3 minutes. Let prune mixture cool for approx. 30 minutes.

Sift flours and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl (add bran from wholemeal flour after sieving) and preheat oven gas mark 3 / 170°C / 150°C fan.

Add California Prune mixture to flour mix with a large spoon, add marmalade and mix.
Spoon mixture into lined tin and cover with double square of baking parchment with a hole in the centre (about the size of a ten pence). Bake for 2 to 2 hours 15 minutes.

When baked remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes, transfer to rack.


  1. Prunes are very underestimated! Hated them at school but I like them now!

  2. Pam Francis Gregory30 December 2014 at 21:55

    Very interesting!

  3. Prunes always remind me of old people, my gran is the only person I knew to eat them. Great recipes though, may have to give them a go

  4. I love prunes. Fab with chocolate. Happy new year!

  5. I love the look of these cakes- I bet they come out lovely and moist

  6. I love fruit and vegetables. Prunes is a fruit which I eat rarely. Probably due to culture. I can recall having them at school with semolina :- Delicious. Thanks for the recipes, ideas etc. Maybe there is a need to spread information, recipes etc more e.g to cafes, restaurants, works / schools canteens etc.

    Rachel Craig

  7. I do not remember ever having prunes although my mother did. However I have such a sweet tooth and am at a loss as how to reduce my sugar intake without going along the artificial sweetener route. This sounds like a good possibility.