Monday, 28 June 2010

French fruit jellies aka Paté de Fruit

We just had a very wet and gloomy weekend here in Hong Kong.  It was raining for almost 1.5 days, definitely a disappointment for anyone planning for the outdoors.  Many people were looking forward to the Germany vs England world cup match and by now most of us have heard or seen replays of Frank Lampard's disallowed goal that was actually in.  

Rainy days were always fun for me as a child growing up in Singapore as we were almost certain there would be clear blue skies after a good shower and if you're lucky, even a rainbow.  Dark skies often made their point and move on promptly, giving way to sunny weather quickly, all within a few hours.  Having had no time for any kitchen creations the whole week, I was kind of happy to have Saturday indoors while it was pouring outside.  I've been wanting to try making paté de fruit for some time and it was the best lazy afternoon to do it.

Not wanting to head out in the rain, I looked into my kitchen cupboards to see if I had enough of the right ingredients. Thankfully, paté de fruit only requires 4 basic ingredients: fruit puree of choice, sugar, liquid pectin and lemon juice.  I had a choice of making either strawberry or peach flavored paté de fruit and settled on peach after considering my last post was on strawberry macarons.

Like macarons and eclairs, paté de fruit is popular with food bloggers and I had no problems finding plenty of recipes, guides and information on the internet which is always great for initial attempts.  In terms of recipe I eventually settled for one provided by talented Helen of, who also uses liquid pectin.  

In my opinion it all went pretty well up to the point I had to remove the set paté de fruit out of the pan to cut into little bite-size pieces.  I was ready for the extensive amount of non-stop stirring required, and the constant monitoring of the candy thermometer.  But none of the "to dos" and "not to dos" I read on the internet warned me that the paté de fruit was going to be so absolutely sticky that I should have lined the pan up the sides, such that I could just lift the entire piece out easily.  I had lined only the bottom of the pan and after loosening the sides with a spatula, I tried to flip the entire piece out on a parchment paper only to have half of it fall on the side of the pan...argh...given how sticky the paté de fruit was, tearing it off from the side of the pan meant I pretty much destroyed it... : (  Thankfully I still manage to save the other half of it....

So, for the sake of anyone else that's attempting this at home, my list of notes would be:
1. Be prepared to stir the mixture non-stop for about an hour closely monitoring the temperature via a candy thermometer.
2. Don't try this at home without a candy thermometer, its futile.
3. Use a big saucepan or pot with tall sides, it helps with the evaporation and stirring.
4. Line the bottom & sides of the pan using a single sheet of parchment paper so you can lift the entire piece of paté de fruit out easily instead of trying to flip it out.  Coat the top with sugar before flipping it over on a clean surface and tearing the parchment paper off to coat the other side, then using a sharp knife cut into small pieces or shapes or your choice. 

So pictures you see here are that of my half a pan of paté de fruit that survived.  To make it more interesting I used a cookie cutter to cut it into flower shapes instead of the conventional cubes.

I've been told its good to leave recipes after each post so I'm making a point to do so from now on, even though I'm really lazy when it comes to typing or copying out recipes. =P

Below is the recipe I used, slightly adapted in terms of methodology (including my own notes) from Helen's posted at

380g peach puree, drained through a medium sized mesh to remove any large pieces
1 tablespoon lemon juice
400g sugar, divided into 100g and 300g portions
4 tablespoons liquid pectin

1. Line bottom and side of a 8x8-inch pan with parchment paper and set aside. 
2. Place the peach puree in a saucepan or pot  and add in the lemon juice. 
3. Stir in 100g sugar and heat mixture until the temperature registers 45 C, stirring constantly. 
4. Add the remaining 1.5 cups (300gr) sugar and the pectin to the pot and slowly bring the mixture over medium high heat to 93 C, stirring constantly. 
5. Turn the heat down a bit and keep the mixture at 93 C for 2 to 3 minutes. 
6. Turn the heat back up and slowly bring the mixture to 106 C, keeping it there for an additional 2-3 minutes (turn the heat down if necessary to do so). 
7. Remove from the heat and immediately pour the mixture into your pan lined with parchment paper. Let set for a couple of hours in room temperature.
8. Remove set mixture from pan by lifting parchment paper off from the side.  
9. Lightly dust top of the set mixture with sugar to ensure its not sticky.  Turn set mixture over and tear off the parchment paper before dusting the other side with sugar.
10. Cut shapes with a sharp knife or cookie cutter dusted with sugar and roll the pieces in sugar till nicely coated. 
11. Store in refrigerate.


  1. wow. what a wonderful write up thank you so much for sharing your insights and for the dos and don'ts list.



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