Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Reduction Fruit Paste | Recipe

(Click here for more cooking ideas.)

Today's post is a wonderfully delicious and healthy fruit paste that adds that special something to crepes, pancakes, waffles, toast, ice cream, or whatever you would like to eat it with.  You can store it in the fridge for up to a week and eat it like apple sauce, hot or cold.  The one I made today had guavas from our tree, strawberries, banana and apple juice.  That's just what we had in the house.  You can use pretty much any fruit, berry, or juice combination.

Reduction Fruit Paste

25 minutes, serves 2.

About 8 large strawberries, fresh or frozen
2 medium bananas
5 medium pineapple guavas, halved and scooped
3/4 cup of apple juice, preferably unsweetened

In a medium saucepan, add all the ingredients and let sit covered over medium to low heat until the fruit starts to soften.  If you are using frozen fruit or berries, this may take a little longer.  The reason for the juice is that it keeps the fruit from burning and drying out before it's soft enough to become a paste.  It also adds a little flavor variety.  Fruits that come apart completely, like bananas, guavas, and raspberries, help thicken up the mix.  Once the fruit is soft, uncover the saucepan and reduce the heat to low.  You should see a low boil, but not enough to splash or make a mess.

Use a wooden spatula to start breaking up your fruits and stirring the mix.  As the fruits become softer, the more easily they will break up and it will start to look like lumpy fruit soup.  This is perfect.  You are now beginning the reduction process.  You will now be essentially evaporating the liquid until it the fruity soup condenses into a paste.  Make sure the heat is adjusted so that you are still getting a low boil.  Be sure to occasionally stir the mix so that it cooks evenly.  When you have reached your desired texture (slightly lumpy paste), remove the saucepan from the heat and let it cool.

Fruit paste stores well in the freezer if you wish to double the recipe and keep half for another day.  If you wish to keep some in the fridge for later, a little lemon juice will help it keep.

Awesome Tip of the Day:  Cooking some Happy Pancakes or crepes?  Start the fruit paste while you're making the pancake batter.  It will essentially cook itself as long as you stir it occasionally between pancake flipping.  By the time the pancakes are finished, the paste should be finished and ready to eat.

If you're in a big hurry, you can just nuke some fruit in the microwave and stir.  I prefer the reduction paste because it doesn't make your pancakes soggy or run all over your plate.

Here are some other fruit combinations to try:

Two apples, one shredded, one cubed (for texture).  About 1/2 cup of blueberries. 3/4 cup of orange juice.  Optional, cinnamon and vanilla.  Optional, chopped walnuts.

About 5 large strawberries.  About 3/4 cup of diced pineapples.  One banana. 3/4 cup of coconut water or coconut milk.  Optional, a few slices of mango.

Try peach, pineapple and banana.  Try berries, berries, berries.  Try strawberry guavas (my favorite), pineapple and orange juice.  Get creative, it's hard to mess this one up.

1 comment:

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