Growing up, our next-door neighbors had berry bushes in their yard and a plum tree down by the sidewalk between our driveways. They would leave a fruit picker basket out as encouragement to anyone passing by to help themselves when the plums were in season. I loved standing in the shade and enjoying the messy goodness of just-picked plums, plump and warm from the summer sun. It was heaven.
With that sensation in mind, I came across Marian Burros's Original Plum Torte recipe on New York Times Cooking, which is a wonderful resource for inspiration. This beloved classic was published annually for six years back in pre-digital days (ahem, the 80's) due to its fiercely loyal following. It's a luscious dish, with sunken plums like buried treasure.
This plum torte makes a great summer dessert paired with homemade whipped cream to cap off a relaxed outdoor dinner, and I've also served it plain as a decadent breakfast. As noted in the recipe, the torte can be frozen and enjoyed long after plums go out of season.