Monday, December 19, 2011

Quince marmalade


That's the second autumn when my mom made quince marmalade. Last year the stocks lasted till late winter. It suddenly became so deeply imbedded in the family eating that we can't imagine our mornings without it any more. Sometimes we have it on toasted bread with fresh cheese, other times - on its own with tea. When I started inquiring it turned out that this marmalade comes from hispanic cooking and the particular recipe - from an amazing mama-fenix - Russian food blogger living in Barcelona.

I love this magic about quince, that it changes the color from white to deep delicious red while cooking. Another great thing about it is that it has so much natural pectin that no jellying agents are needed to make the marmalade.

We use fruit marmalade in some of our Christmas cookies and that's where the natural quince or apple marmalade is essential. It holds well even if you heat it, so you can stuff, say, cookie rolls with it, bake them in the oven and the marmalade won't melt down and run out to the tray (this happens to marmalade made with gelatin).

There is nothing really complicated about making this marmalade and the fun of observing the color changing is worth trying it at least once.

Quince marmalade (many thanks to mama-fenix for the recipe)

1 kg quince
800 g sugar
1 lemon

Quarter and core the quince (do not peel). Quarter the lemon. Place the quince and the lemon in a pan, cover with water, bring to boil and cook under lid for around 30 minutes till the quince is soft.

Drain, discard the lemon and peel the quince. Chop the quince into 1-2 cm pieces, return to the pan, add the sugar and bring to boil. Cook on medium heat stirring occasionally till the "jam" thickens (1 - 1.5 hours). The color will gradually change - first to rose, then to dark red. You can stop at the rose stage, this will yield a softer spreadable marmalade.

Remove from heat and puree the jam using a blender, then return to the pan and cook for 10 more minutes. Pour into rectangular cooking pan and let cool. When it's cool and set, cut it into the shapes you prefer.

We store it airtight at room temperature and it lasts for months. If you wish to be safer you can store it in the fridge. Be sure to try it for breakfast - on a cereal bread toast with some fresh cheese.

Related posts and links:

Home made apricot jam (varenie)
Barcelona Catalan cooking class at Cook&Taste
Polish style szarlotka (apple pie)

Mama-fenix food blog (Russian)