According to Google, the quince was sacred to Aphrodite and Venus, the goddesses of love, and a symbol of love, happiness and fertility in Greek and Roman times. I just love every thing about them ! Their buttery yellow colour, their soft, furry film when first picked, their beautiful organic shape, but most of all their delicious aroma. 4 or 5 quinces left in the fruit bowl give off the most delicate perfume, that for me, remind me of my childhood, of crisp autumn days and cosy warm kitchens.
Quinces are really hard and require long, gentle cooking. Their flesh is white, but after 2 hours of slow, poaching in the oven, they turn this gorgeous deep, ruby orange colour....where does this amazing colour come from ? !
My clever friend Gill made quince jelly this year and we did a swap:-- a jar of her quince jelly for a jar of my apricot jam. The jelly is the most beautifully coloured preserve and I love how the light shines through it.
We were given some quinces last week and so for tea today ( and desert tonight ) I have made a quince and chocolate tart. The recipe belongs to Maggie Beer, a much loved cook and food celebrity from South Australia's Barossa Valley. It's a little tricky to make, I don't think mine is quite cooked in the middle, ( notice I have put the cream where the gooiest bit is ) but definitely worth the effort. The tea is simple........English Breakfast.Thanks for visiting me today, and for more Tuesday tea parties visit here.