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Greek home cooks used a watery, calcium chloride solution to make crunchy pumpkin and other fruit preserves long before Ferran Adria and Jose Andres exploited the chemical in their famous spherification technique, which they use to create multicolored fruit and vegetable "pearls" or spectacular "olive bonbons" from olive paste.
"Place a piece of Calcium Hydroxide (the stuff one uses to make slaked lime and whitewash) in a large bowl and fill with water; stir a couple of times and let set. Use just the liquid to macerate the fruit in, discarding the solids at the bottom," the old recipes instructed. I rejected the idea of using even a tiny quantity of the caustic stuff, which also doubles as the base for the disinfecting whitewash on island houses. Furthermore, I found no Greek recipe that specified the safe amount needed, and had to rely on my late mother-in-law and other home cooks for instructions--my mother didn't make spoon sweets, so she was never an available source of information.
So I never considered testing recipes for the superb whole apricot preserves my mother-in-law made each summer, or the fragrant green fig preserves, and certainly not kolokytha rossoli (pumpkin preserves). Pumpkin and other fruit become mushy when simmered in syrup even briefly, so there is no point in trying to make them into preserves without the calcium bath. I believed that the traditional technique was a tad poisonous, so I didn't even describe it in any of my books.