As I discovered last night, making pâte de fruit from scratch is not for the faint of heart. It's not difficult, just time-consuming. Even knowing what I know now, though, I'd still make them again.
I used a recipe from The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters, via Not Without Salt—with a few adjustments.
Instead of straight apple, I used a mixture of apples (2lb) and quince (1lb), cutting the apples in quarters and the quince in eighths to even out their cooking times. Next time, I would not only core but also peel the fruit before cooking to save time later on.
After straining the cooked fruit to remove the skins and any bits of core that I had missed, I blended the mixture in a food processor for even consistency.
During the reduction phase, I kept the heat at medium the entire time and stirred the mixture occasionally. Happy with how my fruit puree had thickened after about 50 minutes, I skipped the baking phase proposed on Not Without Salt and poured the mixture directly into a greased pan.
Lightly greasing the cooking cutters and knife made for smooth slicing in the morning.
For those with a bit less time or patience, Sweet Pleasure: Plaisir Sucré posted a version that uses liquid pectin to slash the cooking time considerably.
Note: Girl Cook in Paris posted an interesting piece on what distinguishes different types of pâte de fruit. Learn something new every day.