Sunday, December 13, 2020

Meeting the Queen of Quince + Cinnamon-Poached Quince


Years ago - wow! almost a decade ago now - some of my best friends and I went to an event at a local wine tasting room to celebrate my 39th birthday. 


We met the Queen of Quince, Barbara Ghazarian, feasted on some Armenian food, learned to roll Yalanchi Sarma, stuffed grapped leaves, and we picked up signed and personalized copies of her cookbooks. 


"Happy quincing," she wrote. It was a great way to ring in my 39th year. And, whenever I see quince in the markets, I usually shriek in glee and scoop up as many as I can without looking like a fruit hoarders. Okay, sometimes I don't care about looking like a fruit hoarder and just buy it all and set to quincing, yes, it's a verb: to quince!


Barbara Ghazarian writes in Simply Quince*, "the old-fashioned, long simmer method on the stove top is the only process that develops the characteristic caramel color and full-bodied flavor of the fruit." I have found that to be the case, so almost all of my quince experiences start with poaching. 

Ingredients


Procedure

Combine water, sugar, lemon or lime juice in a heavy-bottomed pan and bring to a boil to dissolve the sugar. Add the quince and cinnamon stick. Simmer uncovered for 75 to 90 minutes until the quince is tender. 

The fruit will turn golden, then a pinkish apricot color. Spoon the fruit into sterilized jars, insert a cinnamon stick, cover with poaching liquid. As the quince cools, the jar will seal. Refrigerate and use within two to three weeks. Or you can process them in a water bath and they will hold for longer in your pantry.


We used some of these rose-colored slightly sweet poached quince wedges with a hint of cinnamon as a bed for our carrot-potato latkes on the first night of Hannukah. Stay tuned for that recipe...

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**I am an affiliate of rawspicebar.com and may receive a commission for any purchases made through provided links. However, it doesn't cost you anything extra and I appreciate the support.

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