Thursday, November 17, 2005


Don't say I never gave you anything. Now you have two uses for quince- you have a use for that 'Q' tile in a Scrabble game and you have a recipe for a tasty little pie. There was a slight delay in getting hold of what seemed to be the elusive quince. My patience was rewarded when they turned up looking big and tasty. The next dilemma was deciding what to do with it. There have been a few articles recently that show numerous dishes to whip up using our lovely little quince but I wasn't in the mood for anything labour intensive. Since it's been chilly all week, something warm and sweet was needed.

I got three lovely little letters for you. P-I-E. Anytime is pie time. So it was decided that my pretty little quince was going into my belly (and unfortunately straight to my hips) in pie form. A little research into cooking with quince concluded with the unanimous decision of one that this bad boy needed to be poached to soften it up. Since everything I read said how unedible quince is in its raw state, I of course had to taste it. It wasn't as nasty as I expected it to be but it was slightly tough to cut up. It was dry tasting but you could taste a floraly appley peary flavour. Definitely a nice change from the usual apple or pie tart that cooked up fairly quickly.

The Boy hasn't tasted it yet as he gorged himself on the lasagne at dinner but I had a small slice last night and have been picking at it all day. A winner.


Serves 4-5


1 Quince cored and cut into eights
1 Pear cored and cut into sixths
225 g. Sugar
1 pt. Water
1 Cinnamon Stick
2 Whole Star Anise

For the pastry-
120 g. Butter
200 g. Plain Flour
1 Egg Yolk
2 tbsp. Sugar

Make the pastry first- blend the butter and flour until it looks like coarse breadcrumbs. Add the sugar and yolk. Roll into a ball, wrap in cling film and place in the fridge for 20 minutes.

Bring the water and sugar to a boil in a saucepan that is deep enough to fit the quince. Once the sugar is melted, add the cinnamon stick, star anise and the quince. Simmer for 30 minutes or until the quince is softened but not mushy. Remove from the syrup and allow to cool.

Preheat the oven to 200C.
Take the pastry out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature. Roll out onto a floured surface and make a disc slightly larger than the pie dish.

In an ovenproof pie dish (or any shape dish- mine was oval shaped), place the pieces of quince and pear in random order. Add a quarter of the syrup. Place the pastry on top and crimp the extra pastry along the dish. Slice a small hole in the middle so the steam can release.

Bake for 30-40 minutes until the pastry is golden brown.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The Membrillo has many more uses in Mexican culture, a favorite in my home town of Tecoman, Colima is to make "Ponche" (literally punch). Very popular for baptisms, weddings, quinceaneras and other family parties.
You take equal parts of Quince juice, water and drinking alcohol then add one kilo of sugar for every liter of juice and stir. Light the surface with a match and burn for three minutes to carmelize the mixture, then extinguish. Put in large container and let it ferment for 2-3 days. Serve in large water glasses (one to a customer is usually enough). By the way, I got 72pts with equal on a triple and cross with exit!