quince compote, 2 ways

(Yields about 4 cups for each recipe)


The Magic of Quince is in the Cooking
Magic starts to happen as you cook quince.  The unremarkable white interior of the fruit turns a beautiful rosy hue.  The tannins that make raw quince so bitter and unpalatable break down into smaller compounds and color pigments are released.  Even after cooking, if you store your compote in the refrigerator for several days, you'll notice the autumnal color gets richer.


3-4 quinces (about 1-1/2 lbs), peeled, cored and sliced into about 8 pieces
3 cups water
1 cup sugar
3/4 cups cider vinegar (or orange blossom or champagne vinegar)
orange zest from 1/2 orange, cut into 3 strips
6-8 whole cloves, poked through the orange zest
7-10 sage leaves
1 bay leaf     

3-4 quinces (about 1-1/2 lbs), peeled, cored and sliced into about 8 pieces
4 cups of water
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup honey
12-15 whole cardamom pods
2 Tbsp rose water


If you are indeed making both compotes simultaneously, combine all the ingredients for the savory compote, except the quinces, in one large sauce pan.  Separately,  combine all the ingredients for the sweet compote, except the quinces in another large sauce pan.  If you choose to making only one compote, follow along with just one pot.

Bring to a simmer over high heat.  Reduce the heat to low and add quinces to each.  Partially cover the pans with lids.  

Continue to simmer until quinces are tender when pierced, about 45 minutes to one hour.

Allow to cool.  Spoon into storage containers, pouring any liquid over the top of the fruit.  Can be stored in the refrigerator for about a week.

Quinces start to ripen just as our holiday cooking begins to ramp up.  If you are going to have one pot of quince compote simmering on the stove, why not make it two?  How about a savory compote to serve in place of cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving and a sweet one to enjoy now over a bowl of ice cream.


view related blog post:  quince-identally