If you're looking for the perfect fall snack to offer guests at your next get-together, this recipe for mulled cider pâte de fruit couldn't be more perfect. "Pâte de fruit is a fun way to showcase fresh fruit flavors of all types — using apple cider is a bit more unconventional, and is a nice way to bring in fall flavors and spices," says recipe developer Katie Rosenhouse, adding, "[It] makes a beautiful gift! Place into a small box or pile into a jar — add a few cinnamon sticks to garnish, and they're a lovely party favor. They also make a colorful addition to a fall-inspired dessert table."
But if you've never had pâte de fruit before, you may be wondering if the result is really worth the effort, or what it even tastes like. "Pâte de fruit are chewy gummies that are soft in texture. I would describe these candies as a fruit jelly that's full of flavor, spice, and sweetness," Rosenhouse explains. Plus, while it's true this recipe takes a while, Rosenhouse assures us this version is beginner-friendly. "There's an art to making pâte de fruit at home, and this is a good starter recipe for those who might be new to making this type of candy. There are no special (or expensive) ingredients, and it all comes together in one pot," she says. So go ahead and give it a whirl — you have little to lose and a lot (of candy) to gain.
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Gather The Ingredients For Mulled Cider Pâte De Fruit
As with any recipe, you'll need to gather your ingredients. You may actually have many of these ingredients on hand already, especially if you keep your pantry stocked. You'll need cooking spray, apple cider, ground ginger, cinnamon sticks, an orange, granulated sugar, fruit pectin, a Honeycrisp apple, corn syrup, kosher salt, and ground cinnamon. There's also the option to add a small amount of spiced rum, if you're so inclined.
Prep The Pan
Line an 8-inch baking pan with cooking spray and parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two sides. Set the pan aside. "I like lining the baking pan with parchment paper as a way to easily lift out the pâte de fruit after they set. Using cooking spray is recommended — you never know when the gummies might stick, and cooking spray on the pan (and on the knife between cuts) can be a great way of making cutting the pâte de fruit a breeze," Rosenhouse says.
Simmer The Cider And Spices
Go ahead and place a large pot on the stove. Add the apple cider, ginger, cinnamon sticks, and orange peel to the pot and bring it all to a simmer.
Allow The Cider To Further Infuse
When the cider is simmering, remove the pot from the heat and cover it with plastic wrap. Set it aside to allow the cider to infuse with the spices for 30 minutes.
Combine Sugar And Pectin
In a small bowl, combine 2 ½ cups of the sugar and the pectin in a bowl. Whisk well, then set the bowl aside.
Grate The Apple
Use the large holes of a box grater to grate the unpeeled apple, discarding the core. Set the grated apple aside.
Remove The Solids From The Cider And Simmer
Remove the plastic wrap from the apple cider and use a slotted spoon to remove the orange peel and cinnamon sticks. Place the pot back on the stove and bring it back to a simmer.
Stir In Sugar And Apple
Add the corn syrup and sugar mixture to the cider. Stir until the sugar completely dissolves, then add the grated apple.
Cook The Candy Mixture
Turn the stove to medium-high heat and allow the mixture to cook until it registers 235 degrees Fahrenheit on an instant-read or candy thermometer. Stir the pot occasionally. This should take about 40-45 minutes.
If you don't have a thermometer, Rosenhouse notes that you can check the candy's consistency by placing a spoonful of the mixture on a chilled plate. If it sets quickly and is firm enough to hold its shape, the candy is ready.
Pour Into The Pan To Set
Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the salt. This is also when you should stir in the rum if you're choosing to use it.
Pour the candy into the prepared pan and leave it uncovered. Set the pan aside to give the candy time to set — allow at least 4 hours, or overnight.
Remove The Candy From The Pan
Take hold of the edges of the parchment paper, and lift the pâte de fruit from the pan — Rosenhouse notes it should release easily. Flip the candy onto a cutting board and remove the paper.
Slice The Candy Into Pieces
Use a sharp knife to cut the candy into 6 rows. Clean your knife between cuts and spray it with cooking spray to help keep the candy from sticking. Further cut each row into 8 individual pieces.
Coat In Cinnamon Sugar Mixture And Serve
Combine the remaining ¼ cup sugar with the ground cinnamon in a medium-sized bowl. Toss a few pieces of pâte de fruit in the sugar mixture, coating them thoroughly. Transfer the candies to a baking sheet or serving platter and continue until all the pieces are coated.
The candy is ready to eat or gift immediately, but if you'll be keeping some of it on hand, be sure to store it in an airtight container in a cool spot. It should last for up to two weeks.
Mulled Cider Pâte De Fruit Recipe
Prep Time: 4h 40mCook Time: 55mYield: 48 PiecesIngredients
2 ¾ cups apple cider
1 teaspoon ground ginger
4 cinnamon sticks
1 medium orange
2 ¾ cups granulated sugar, divided
1 (1.75 ounce) box fruit pectin
1 Honeycrisp apple
¼ cup corn syrup
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1-2 tablespoons spiced rum, optional
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Line an 8-inch baking pan with cooking spray and parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two sides; set aside.
In a large pot, bring apple cider, ginger, cinnamon sticks, and the peel of the orange to a simmer (save the rest of the orange for another use).
Remove pot from heat; cover with plastic wrap and set aside to infuse for 30 minutes.
Whisk to combine 2 ½ cups sugar and pectin in a bowl; set aside.
Grate the apple (unpeeled) using the large holes of a box grater. Discard the core. Set aside.
Use a slotted spoon to remove orange and cinnamon sticks from cider mixture. Bring back to a simmer.
Add corn syrup and sugar mixture to cider. Stir to dissolve. Add grated apple and stir.
Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture registers 235°F on an instant-read or candy thermometer, about 40 to 45 minutes. (Note: If you don't have a thermometer to use, check the consistency by placing a spoonful of the mixture onto a chilled plate. It should set quickly. When it's firm enough to hold its shape, the candy is ready.)
Remove pot from heat; stir in salt and rum, if using. Pour into prepared baking pan. Set aside, uncovered, at least 4 hours or overnight.
Lift pâte de fruit from pan (it should release easily). Flip onto a cutting board; remove parchment.
Cut into 6 rows, cleaning your knife between cuts. Cut each row into 8 pieces.
In a medium bowl, stir to combine remaining ¼ cup sugar with cinnamon. Toss a few pieces of pâte de fruit at a time into the sugar mixture to coat. Transfer to a baking sheet or serving platter.
Store candy in an airtight container in a cool spot for up to two weeks.
Read the original article on Tasting Table.