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SethG

Quinces

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Combine quince with mince and eat with a runcible spoon?

:biggrin:

When I searched a bit, I found some interesting sounding options

including quince mince pie, but since you are less interested in

baking, maybe the following will appeal?

Gingered Cranberry and Quince sauce:

http://www.sff.net/people/nalo/writing/200...-slices-of.html

or

Moroccan Lamb and Quince Stew:

http://www.astray.com/recipes/?show=Morocc...20quince%20stew

Milagai

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Thank you for the wonderful ideas; do keep them coming since I am sure this thread will be of value to others.

I hope after I cook the one (and only) quince in my possession to try a number of different preparations, especially since the variety of suggestions is appealing.

Quinces are extremely expensive in the United States and have just started to appear on a regular basis. Whole Foods sells them for $3 each or even more perhaps; I found mine for $2 at a different supermarket. This is one reason persimmons are also still a novelty in this country.

The simplest explanation, though, is that they are not commonly grown, most people have never heard of them and there is no major shift in national demographics that would propel them into the mainstream along with mangoes and plantains.

While apple pie and America go hand and hand, I wonder if we are also suspicious of a fruit that has to be cooked to enjoy it.

As far as mostarda goes, there is one crucial ingredient that is not accessible in the United States. I imagine that quinces would be perfect for such a preparation. Meanwhile, there are lots of recipes for quince chutney which would be similar.

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I've never actually eaten quince before, but my friend who works for a famer's market told me that if you wrap them in newspaper and store them in a cool dark place they will last for a month.

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Combine quince with mince and eat with a runcible spoon?

:biggrin:

:laugh: Sometimes, Milagai, you are oh so cute!

(I need to thank Klary for sending instructions for roasting. My first attempt will be to roast the one I have, cutting down the sugar in Paula Wolfert's recipe* that is supposed to serve as a dessert so it will complement lamb and a kind of pilaf mixed with red onions and roasted squash.)

*ETA and perhaps nod to Eden's suggestion. I have zinfandel.


Edited by Pontormo (log)

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Shop for quince in a middle eastern store. Their prices are very reasonable, usually 1/3 the price in supermarkets. At least that is what I find here.

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One of the TFL recipes we use quite ofter in fall, is glazed quince. Goes great with lamb or game or pork.

First, make a quick gastrique with brown sugar and honey. Add the quince and reduce until a syrup consistency. Add a splash of sherry vinegar and some finished veal sauce or boredlaise. Drop into a 300 degree oven and baste every 10 minutes or so until soft.

This makes a great addition to any savory fall dish... the TFL way. :)

-Chef Johnny

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i discovered quinces last year at the appletree store(mexican/asian owned and operated).

i quartered them and stewed them with some water, sugar, cinnamon stick and some black peppercorns. it took about 45 minutes. then i used them to make a quince and port sauce for some duck breasts, on my oatmeal and with my yoghurt.

i noticed them back in the market last week....

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Quinces have made sporadic appearances in the Duluth-area grocery stores just within the last few years, and I'm still trying to figure out how to find a good one. Those that I've tried here have sometimes cooked into the beautiful rose color, sometimes just turned brown with cooking, but either way have had little flavor to go along with it. I'd describe them as tasting like a pear, with a slight overtone of pineapple. They weren't worth the fuss. I think they probably weren't ripe, or perhaps they'd gone past their prime.

I've had membrillo and know it's wonderful. I suspect I'd feel the same way about good quince, but I need to know how to find it. I suspect our local produce managers don't know what to look for either, and are inadvertently selecting substandard fruit.

What should I look for, smell for, check for, the next time I have a chance to get some quince?

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Quinces have made sporadic appearances in the Duluth-area grocery stores just within the last few years, and I'm still trying to figure out how to find a good one.  Those that I've tried here have sometimes cooked into the beautiful rose color, sometimes just turned brown with cooking, but either way have had little flavor to go along with it.  I'd describe them as tasting like a pear, with a slight overtone of pineapple.  They weren't worth the fuss.  I think they probably weren't ripe, or perhaps they'd gone past their prime.

I've had membrillo and know it's wonderful.  I suspect I'd feel the same way about good quince, but I need to know how to find it.  I suspect our local produce managers don't know what to look for either, and are inadvertently selecting substandard fruit.

What should I look for, smell for, check for, the next time I have a chance to get some quince?

It's been hit or miss for us our way as well. I look for intensely aromatic quinces - if they aren't, they will not better with time, in my experience. I also look for bright, yellow or yellow-to-gold skin. Greenish-hued skin is unacceptable, and will yield the blah-taste (at best) you mention.

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Greenish-hued skin is unacceptable, and will yield the blah-taste (at best) you mention.

The last ones I had were much more green than yellow, (and extremely knobbly) and they were the most fragrant and aromatic I ever tasted.

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according to my notes, (and I've never done a side by side to test this) the variety that is not as fragrant actually has the better flavor, but I don't think I've ever actually had a choice, so I just take whatever I can get :smile:

I have a batch of quince-butter working away in the crock pot right now :wub: I'd never tried this technique before, but will be making apple butter etc this way form now on - it's SO easy!

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Greenish-hued skin is unacceptable, and will yield the blah-taste (at best) you mention.

The last ones I had were much more green than yellow, (and extremely knobbly) and they were the most fragrant and aromatic I ever tasted.

That's interesting. I've not had that experience. From my use over the years, the green-skinned ones are much more muted in aroma compared to the yellow or golden-skinned quinces. Additionally, since quince is naturally extremely high in tannins, I find that ripening allows the development of the complex of sugars that offset this astringent character, and lend flavor to the finished fruit; green-skinned quinces are missing this balancing sugar content; so I don't use them. Additionally, I don't find that picked, green-skinned quinces improve with time. They maintain the character as they are bought. I'm not certain, but I'm guessing, that natural enzymatic conversion of starch to sugar ceases or considerably slows on picking, but this is just a stab in the dark. I only know that unlike other fruits (bananas, for an obvious example), I don't find a further ripening of character if I begin with greenish fruit.

Just my experience, of course, and everyone's mileage may differ.


Edited by paul o' vendange (log)

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according to my notes, (and I've never done a side by side to test this) the variety that is not as fragrant actually has the better flavor, but I don't think I've ever actually had a choice, so I just take whatever I can get  :smile:

I have a batch of quince-butter working away in the crock pot right now  :wub: I'd never tried this technique before, but will be making apple butter etc this way form now on - it's SO easy!

I have been preaching this refrain for many years. I have several crockpot/slow cookers, from a little one quart(which has never been out of its box) to a 8.5 quart and also I have my grandmother's 22 quart electric roaster and since she bought it in 1948, it has produced thousands of quarts of applesauce, apple butter, peach butter, plum butter, pear honey, etc.

I have never had a batch scorch either.

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gallery_21505_4018_16829.jpg

I've made my first membrillo yesterday.

It's pretty soft and sticky, which makes me think I should have dried it a little longer.

Maybe I could still do that?

More questions. How long does it keep? and what else could I do with it, besides eating it with cheese, and just eating it as it is?

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That's beautiful!

I don't have an answer to your questions. However, as a quince lover and a membrillo lover, that's just beatiful!

Oh, we do have a cut piece of membrillo in the fridge that we brought back from Paris the end of October. We cut it open on Thanksgiving, and used some the other day and it was perfectly fine.

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Im guessing there are more than one variety of quince, hence the difference in skin-color / results correlation for different people in different environments.

Doncha wish the markets would list the variety with fruit, and not just "quince", "black plum", etc?

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My neighbor just brought me a huge bag of quinces from his tree. I'll make membrillo for sure, as I do every year from jackal10's lovely recipe, but I'd like to do some sort of chutney as well, or mostarda, or both. For a chutney I'm thinking that I have fresh ginger and some grey Provencal shallots, but what else might I add? And did anyone ever get a great mostarda recipe together?

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Fantastic ideas for quinces here! I never thought to do an eG search on them.

We have a large quince bush outside - like a ten foot ball - and each year we make some preserve. It usually takes the form of freezer apple sauce made with half Gravenstein apples and half quince. The latter are very hard to core but I have made a tool just for this purpose. Its a 10" length of steel pipe with a sharpened beveled end, and a slit up the side. I actually made it for use on my wood lathe as a bowl gouge, but I wound up buying a more functional one. I find its worth pounding the core out of the quince before softening in hot water and before the food mill. Its therapeutic if not efficient.

I boil down the fruit mixture quite a bit - I like it think and tart. Then it goes into lots of small freezable plastic containers. Excellent pork condiment.

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You have a quiince bush? You lucky devil!

Paul Wilson from the Botanical in Melbourne did quinces for dessert. The link for the cooking class is here

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the kitchen floor is covered in quinces and I'm about to start on the membrillo, thanks, PG, P the E and Abra for other great quince stuff as I have a quince mountain here :smile:

ps. do you know that if you put a quince in your clothes cupboard it makes everything smell lovely (just don't forget to take it out before it starts to rot :smile: )

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I made a nice, spicy quince chutney today and wrote about it here French Letters but I still have a lot of quinces left, so more ideas will be welcomed!

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the kitchen floor is covered in quinces and I'm about to start on the membrillo, thanks, PG, P the E and Abra for other great quince stuff as I have a quince mountain here :smile:

ps. do you know that if you put a quince in your clothes cupboard it makes everything smell lovely (just don't forget to take it out before it starts to rot :smile: )

You can make a quince pomander that will last a long time and won't rot. In fact, it can last for years.

There is an excellent recipe here:

Pomander recipe

some people do not like to use the orris root powder because it is an allergen to some folks so here is an alternate recipe and the advice to use sandalwood oil (available at most health food stores).

another pomander recipe

More about pomanders

Tied up in a square of inexpensive netting, with a little bow, these make nice decorations. A bowl of pomanders next to the front door is very welcoming and you can give one to guests as they leave.

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You could:

Use some of your membrillo to make a fig/quince/coconut candy.

10 large dried figs or equivalent.

1/2 cup quince preserves or quince paste

3/4 cup finely grated dried coconut (macaroon coconut)

Powdered sugar.

Optional - finely chopped nuts

Put the dried figs through a food/meat grinder using fine die

(If the figs are very dry, put them through coarse die first then grind again on fine)

Transfer ground figs to saucepan and add quince preserves or paste.

Heat over low flame, stirring constantly, until well mixed and just beginning to bubble.

Set aside to cool slightly.

tape a piece of parchment (or aluminum foil "Release" work great) onto counter.

pour the ground coconut onto the foil, pat into a square and pour the warm fig/quince mixture into the center.

Here it helps to have some gloves, particularly if the stuff is still fairly hot.

Oil hands with a little corn oil and begin kneading the coconut into the fruit paste.

Continue kneading until all the coconut has been incorporated and distributed evenly.

It should be just slightly tacky, if too sticky, add a little more coconut.

If you wish, you may add finely chopped nuts.

Shape the candy into ropes, about 1/2 inch in diameter and cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces.

Allow to dry overnight and toss in powdered sugar until lightly coated.

Some people like to add a few drops of rose water or orange flower water to the candy while kneading, but this is rather like gilding the lilly, in my opinion.


Edited by andiesenji (log)

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