Fruit pastes and syrups

Various fruits like raisins, prunes, dates and figs are processed to form pastes and syrups (concentrates). The syrups are water extracts concentrated to 70% solids under vacuum and the pastes are macerates to about 75% solids.

Pastes have been used for fillings of biscuits like Fig Bar (Fig Newtons) and all pastes are useful for dough flavours. Obviously the manufacture of a paste can conceal the use of substandard fruit so care should be taken to select the supplier well. Pastes are usually packed in polythene lined drums of 50 lb (22.7 kg) ex USA and polythene lined boxes of 12.5 kg from other countries. There is a tendency for fig paste to develop a strong unpleasant taste on ageing, so only paste made from the current season's crop should be used.

Pastes are a particularly useful ingredient for flavouring and as the syrup component in soft cookies.