Have you ever had quince? It’s such an interesting fruit and I love how perfectly imperfect it is and how it transforms from hard and bitter to sweet and juicy when it’s cooked. After cooking it has beautiful sweet flavour that goes so perfectly with spices like cinnamon, vanilla, cloves, anise star… In Croatia there is kind of nostalgia around this sweet yellow fruit because many of our grandmothers used to put it on top of the cabinets and wardrobes as it has the most magical smell and aroma. Also many songs mention quince and always in some kind of heartfelt, Autumn/Winter melancholy and when translated to Croatian (quince = dunja) it’s also very popular female name. I am often inspired by nature and fresh seasonal produce that I connect with certain emotions and to me quince says: nostalgia, beauty, tradition, home, comfort, warmth.
So you see, for all those reasons I wanted to use it for my last Autumn inspired blog post before I get into festive mood (hopefully!) and start sharing those Christmas inspired, festive recipes and photos. 🙂
Talking about Christmas mood, I must admit that I have a feeling like everybody is already in full swing of cookies baking, trees decoration, presents buying and Christmas songs and movies playing. Me, on the other hand, still kind of holding onto Autumn and not in that festive mood just yet. But I’m sure I’ll get there soon enough! I better as the time is flying so fast that if I don’t hurry up, I’ll be late to all the fun! How about you, already baking cookies and singing Christmas carols? 😀
Let’s go back to our beautiful quince… I am yet to try baking with it and I’m sure it would taste amazing in cakes and pies but today I’m sharing a very simple recipe for a quince compote where you basically just put sliced quince and spices in the water and let it cook until it turns soft and pretty pink colour. Believe me when I tell you that your house will smell AMAZING and you might have neighbours stopping by to see what’s cooking in your kitchen! 🙂 After it’s cooked, you can use the fruit slices like me on top of the yogurt or your oatmeal or just as they are sprinkled with some cinnamon. You can also use the sweet syrup any way you like, mixed in your porridge, smoothie or taking it by spoon to sweeten up your day.
Recipe in English:
- 3 large quince
- ½ cup honey
- 1 vanilla bean (halved)
- 2 whole cinnamon sticks
- 5-6 cloves
- strip of lemon peel (organic)
- 5 cups water
- Serving: yogurt (I used bio soya yogurt) and cinnamon
- Note: 1 cup = 250 ml
- Peel the quince using your vegetable peeler. Using a sharp knife carefully cut each quince in half and than slice in quarters.
- Cut off the core and remove the seeds. Also remove any dark spots using a small knife.
- Once cleaned, place quince slices into a large saucepan and add about 5 cups of water, honey, vanilla bean halved, cinnamon sticks, cloves and a strip of lemon peel.
- Cover with the lid, bring to boil and let it cook over low heat for about 45 minutes or until quince turn soft and pink colour.
- Use cooked quince slices on top of yogurt or stirred into a bowl of oatmeal or as they are sprinkled with some cinnamon.
- You can keep quince in the remaining liquid in the fridge for about a week and use it when wanted.
Recipe in Croatian / Recept na hrvatskom:
- 3 vece dunje
- ½ salice meda
- 1 stapic vanilije (razrezan na pola)
- 2 stapica cimeta
- 5-6 klinicica
- korica jednog limuna (neprskanog)
- 5 salica vode
- Za serviranje: jogurt i cimet (ja sam koristila bio soja jogurt)
- Nappomena: 1 salica = 250 ml
- Ogulite dunje i koristeci ostar noz pazljivo izrezite svaku dunju na pola i zatim na cetvrtine.
- Izrezite jezgru i odstranite kostice. Takodjer izrezite i odstranite sve tamnije dijelove.
- Ociscene cetvrtine dunja stavite u veliku posudu i dodajte otprilike 5 salica vode, med, prepolovljeni stapic vanilije, stapice cimeta, klincice i koricu limuna.
- Pokrijte poklopcem, pustite da zavri i zatim kuhajte na laganoj vatri otprilike 45 minuta ili dok se dunje ne smeksaju i dobiju ruzicastu boju.
- Kuhane dunje uzivajte s jogurtom (po vasem izboru) ili u zdjeli kuhanih zobenih pahuljica ili jednostavno posute s malo cimeta.
- Dunje mozete zadrzati u ostatku tekucine i pohraniti u frizider do jednog tjedna.