Today I’d like to write about semi-forgotten and unpopular – quince! It’s neither an apple nor a pear. Quince is an absolutely unique and gorgeous fruit!
The quince has been a part of many ancient cultures and known as a popular ingredient since medieval times. It has a firm flesh, fuzzy skin and slightly astringent flavour. When you cook quince, its very seductive aroma spreads all over the place:)
“Quince is the fruit of a central Asian tree (Cydonia oblonga) of the rose family.” Naturally its fruit are green or yellow but turn deep rosy pink when thoroughly cooked. Quince is fantastic for making preserves, especially for jam. Recently I’ve made quince jam with lemons (juice and zest), finely grated fresh ginger and ground clove. And it turned out to be red at the end!! Fantastic! Indeed, even spiced quince jam with a charming flavour by its effect on smell sensors reminds rose (!).
This pie is just my fantasy that came out one day:))) As all pies, it requires time and patience. You need to make a basic pie crust (or use ready-made) and poach quinces. And as my regular pie dish was occupied at the time of cooking, I used two deep dishes. I suggest to use one medium ~Ø21-24 cm pie plate/baking dish for it.
* For the Vegan version: replace the butter with solid coconut oil.
Takes 1 hr 45 mins (prep – 35 mins, cooling of the dough and filling – 30 mins, baking – 40 mins) + cooling (min. 1 hour)
110 g cold unsalted butter, cubed
zest of 1 orange
1/2 tbsp powdered orange zest
1/2 + 1/3 cup corn flour
1/2 cup wheat flour
2 tbsp powdered sugar
pinch of salt
3 tbsp (45 ml) cold water
1 kg quince
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/3 tsp cardamom powder
2 tbsp corn starch
For the crust: sift the flours, powdered orange zest, sugar and salt. Add the cubed butter and orange zest. Rub the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles crumbs. Add cold water, 1 tbsp at a time, and stir to combine. Knead gently until the whole thing forms a soft dough. Pat it into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap and place to chill into the fridge for 1 hour or a night (or freezer for 30 mins).
For the filling: remove the core and slice the quinces. Place in a heavy saucepan. Add water, sugar, lemon zest, cardamom and simmer over a medium heat for about 15 minutes, or until quince has softened. Combine the lemon juice, 1 tbsp of quince juice (from the saucepan) and corn starch. Add starchy mixture to the fruit and simmer, stirring continuously. When it thickens, place to cool.
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Grease with oil or butter a medium pie plate/baking dish (Ø21-24 cm). (I had Ø 16,5 cm/9 cm deep baking dish, and 13×7 cm oval).
On a generously floured surface, roll out the pastry. Line the pie plate, trim off any excessive pastry. Spread the cooled filling into the pie crust. Reroll the scraps and cut them into stripes. Top your pie with the stripes. Bake for 40 minutes until golden and the filling is bubbling. Tent with foil, if necessary, after 25-30 minutes of baking. Let cool for at least 1 hour at room temperature. Slice, serve and enjoy! ♥
The pie stores well at room temperature or in the fridge for a few days.