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Thursday, July 7, 2011

Strawberry Pate de Fruit

Do you remember what you wore on your first day of high school?  I do.  I thought I looked super cool in my overalls, pink Gap t-shirt and matching pink socks.  I also had on my brand new Aasics with the pink triangles.  I loved those shoes and wore them all year long.  The triangles always matched my outfit.  And I still own those pink socks.  Thankfully I no longer own those overalls, I think they were too short about a month after I wore them.

When looking in my closet last night I was faced with a similarly important decision.  What do I wear on my first day of work?  What could I see myself wearing on that all important day?  How would I remember myself as I walked through those glass doors?  This was an important decision.  As I mulled over my closet, boyfriend commented "I thought you would have this figured out a while ago!" 

Luckily, I didn't have too much to decide between.  Having worked in a university lab for the past seven and a half years, my wardrobe consists mostly of jeans and cute t-shirts.  My collection of business clothing is far smaller than my collection of white tees.  I'm going to have to go shopping!

Perhaps you're wondering, what did I decide on?  Sage green, silk button-down with a tie at the waist.  Black pants that I have decided are about a size too big after wearing all day.  Black patent leather ballet flats with a shiny silver buckle.  Today was a great day and I looked pretty good walking through those doors.

Strawberry Pate de Fruit

You can cut these into any fun shape or size using small cookie cutters.  Mine are boring and square because all of my cookie cutters are packed and ready to move!  Get ready for an arm workout because you must stir the sugar/fruit mixture constantly.  The fruit burns easily and burnt pate de fruit is less than delicious.  I would recommend eating them within a few days and storing them between layers of wax paper in the fridge.  Mine melted together after two days at room temperature.

2 cups strawberry puree (from about 1 1/2 quart of strawberries)
3 cups sugar
6 oz liquid pectin (I used Certo)
1 tbsp lemon juice
Additional sugar for coating

Spray an 8-inch square pan and line with plastic wrap.  Spray plastic with oil and set aside.

Mix strawberry puree and sugar and begin heating over medium-low heat.  You must stir constantly to keep the fruit from burning.  Use a plastic spatula to occasionally scrape the bottom of the pan.  Heat until you reach 238.  (This took me 30 minutes to reach)

Add pectin and return to a boil.  Stir and heat for one more minute before adding lemon juice.  Remove from the heat and stir to combine the juice.  Pour into your prepared pan and sprinkle the top with sugar.  Allow to cool and set for at least 4 hours. 

Remove candy from the pan, using the plastic wrap, and flip over.  Sprinkle with sugar and cut into desired shape and size.  Coat all sticky edges with sugar.

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