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Apricot Sweet Paste

Kayisi pasado

About the Recipe

Kayisi pasado is a tart confection, made from dried apricots, that sets as a jelly like paste served cut into amber-hued wedges topped with walnuts. The Sephardim from Rhodes love these sweet bites full of concentrated apricot flavor.
Kayisi is easy to make but does require a pair of sturdy hands to stir the paste on the stove top.
I like to offer this delightful and addictive apricot candy with a herbal tea or strong coffee after dinner.
As we say in Ladino – siempre en fiestas i alegrias – always for joyful occasions!


500g (1lb 2oz) dried apricots

2 tsp rose water

2¾ cups sugar


For the topping:

½ cup pine nuts or walnuts


You will need:

a 15.5x10.5cm (6x4in) heatproof dish, lightly oiled


Add the apricots to a heavy-based stainless steel pan. Add enough water to cover the fruit.

Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until apricots are tender, about 30 mins. Drain well.


Transfer the apricots to a food processor and whizz in batches while still hot to a spreadable purée.


Return the purée to the pan. Add the rose water and sugar. Stir the mixture vigorously over medium heat with a wooden spoon for 30 – 35 minute, until the mixture thickens to a paste and leaves a gap when you run a wooden spoon across the bottom of the pan.


Spread the apricot paste into the prepared dish, smoothing the top with a spatula.

Let set to a firm paste that is no longer sticky and can be easily cut, overnight.


Cut into 3cm (1¼in) wide diamond shapes with a sharp knife. Serve either in the dish or invert the paste onto a tray so that the glossy side is up.


Top with pine nuts or walnuts, pressed onto the center of each wedge.


Stella’s Hints:

❖  To store: Interleave the kayisi between layers of baking paper. Store in airtight container in fridge.

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