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Cranberry Jellies

… also known as pâte de fruit… also known as fruit jellies. yum.

To be quite honest I am not a huge fan of these jellies. They turned out well, they are very pretty, and they taste like cranberry, but I think I would have preferred a different flavour.

Cranberry Jellies Makes 64

1 small lemon, sliced and seeds removed 12 ounces fresh cranberries, washed and picked over 6 ounces (1 bottle or 2 pouches) Certo liquid pectin 2 1/2 cups sugar, and more for rolling 12 to 16 ounces bittersweet chocolate (optional)

Cut two 8-by-13-inch rectangles of parchment paper to line an 8-inch square pan: place one rectangle in pan, crease at corners and edges, and place second rectangle in the opposite direction.

Purée lemon slices, cranberries and 1/4 cup water in food processor until smooth. If you like, leave mixture a little chunky.

Combine cranberry purée in medium sauce pan with sugar, and bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil, stirring often, for 4 minutes.

Remove pan from heat and stir in pectin. Return to heat and bring to a boil again. Stir for 1 minute. Pour into pan and let cool until set. Cover and refrigerate in pan until ready to cut.

Using the parchment paper as handles, lift the square of jelly out in one piece and set it on a cutting board. Pat dry with paper towels. Cut into 1-inch squares and roll in sugar. If you want to finish them a few hours ahead of time, place cut squares on a rack to dry for about an hour before rolling in sugar. The sugar eventually melts and oozes a bit after a couple of hours when it comes in contact with the jellies, but rack drying them first delays that eventuality.

To dip some of the jellies in chocolate: Cut the big block in half. Cut one half of the block into squares for rolling in sugar and cut the other half into rectangles for dipping in chocolate. Melt about 12 ounces of chopped chocolate in the microwave at 30-second intervals, stirring after each interval to avoid burning, until most of the chocolate is melted. Stir until it is completely melted. (Or melt in a stainless steel bowl set over hot water. In that case, turn the oven on to the lowest setting so you can re-warm the chocolate as you dip.) See photos below for more details.

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