The Way I See Things


Quince season

I used the excuse of us having quinces - brought down from the tree in the wild garden by the recent storm - and the fact that I therefore 'needed' to devise a still life image around them, to buy some good cheese. Following the photo shoot R and I lunched on beef bourgignon with dauphinoise potatoes, asparagus, and creamed spinach, followed by cheese, dulce de membrillo, and quince liqueur. I can't remember the last time I enjoyed a Sunday lunch as much.

I've given the recipes for dulce de membrillo and quince liqueur before, so to save time and repetition here are those earlier posts:

Dulce de membrillo, more prosaically known as quince paste. You can buy this now in little jars from the supermarket, and it's fine, but the stuff you make yourself is so much better - I mean, just look at those glorious cubes of quinceyness! It's a bit of a faff, admittedly, but I do think it's worth the effort. Also: stilton + dulce de membrillo = gustatory heaven.

Ratafia de coings - otherwise, quince liqueur, or quince vodka. Probably the easiest thing you can make with a quince, and a really lovely drink to serve instead of port or after-dinner liqueurs. Some recipes suggest making it with grappa, and one year I hunted some down and tried it, but honestly I wouldn't bother - vodka gives a better result, and it's cheaper and more easily obtainable.

Back in 2018 we had such a glut of quinces that I made a couple of batches of both dulce de membrillo (and its associated breakfast treat, quince jelly), and quince liqueur, and we then gave away the surplus fruits by putting them in a basket on the front wall, with a note inviting people to help themselves. Since then our quince tree has produced little to no fruit, and a couple of years ago I even found myself buying some from the farm shop. So it's pleasing that this year we've already harvested enough quinces to make both paste and liqueur, and we still have a few more ripening on the tree.

Sign in or get an account to comment.