Quince

Quince are botanically speaking, cousins to apple and pears. And wonderful – once cooked, turning red.

quince paste

16th century quince tree

16th century quince tree

Edward Johnson in The Wonderworking Providence of Sion’s Savior in New England of 1654 says,
“…so that in this poor Wilderness hath not onely equalized England in food, but goes beyond it in some places for the great plenty of wine and sugar, which is ordinarily spent, apples, pears, and quince tarts instead of their former Pumpkin Pies.”
– (p. 210, 1910 ed.)
We’ll get back to the ‘former Pumpkin Pie’ nonsense later….but there were Quince at the Stop & Shop…..
Van Gogh

These were painted by Van Gogh, not Stop & Shop

To make a slic’t Tart of Quinces, Wardens, Pears, Pippins, in slices raw of divers Compounds.
The foresaid fruits being finely pared, and slic’t in very thine slices; season them with beaten cinamon, and candied citron minced, candied orange, or both, or raw orange peel, raw lemon peel, fennil-seed, or caraway-seed or without any of these compounds or spices, but the fruits alone one amongst the other; put to ten pippins six quinces, six wardens, eight pears, and two pound of sugar; close it up, bake it; and ice it as the former tarts.
Thus you may also bake it in patty-pan, or dish, with cold butter paste.
– Robert May. The Accomplist Cook 1660
Quince Fede Galizia MILAN 1578 – 1630

Fede Galizia – Milano 1578-1630

This is what one of my quince tarts looked like

This is what one of my quince tarts looked like

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1 Comment

Filed under Pie, Wicked Wayback

One response to “Quince

  1. That tart looks lovely. I’m a big fan of quince. Love quince paste. I’ve found that when used in stews, it turns pink, rather than the red only appearing of the cooked-down form. It also seems to have a nicer texture once cooked than when raw. I use fresh quince in a lamb and quince stew (Avya Yanisi) that I learned about in Turkey. Mmm — maybe the weather is cool enough now to start making stews.

    I appreciate your talking about quince — as I figure every mention makes it more likely that it won’t vanish from the grocery store for lack of interest

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