Pot-Roasted Quince

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


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By Ben Shewry

Published 2012

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  • 1.8 kg (4 lb) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 1.95 litres (68¼ fl oz) water
  • 450 ml (16 fl oz) red wine
  • 6 cinnamon quills
  • 6 star anise
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 60 black peppercorns
  • 3 fresh bay leaves
  • 15 g (½ oz) orange peel
  • 6 quinces (see Note)
  • juice of 6–12 lemons


Place all of the ingredients (except the quinces and lemon juice) in a Dutch oven and bring to the boil, then simmer for 10 minutes.

Peel the quince, halve, remove the core and stem, and shape the quince halves into even-sized pieces. Gather up all of the quince peel and trimmings in a piece of muslin (cheesecloth), tie the top with kitchen string and add the bag to the syrup. Add the quince, cover with a disc of baking paper, then a lid and reduce the heat to the lowest setting. Very gently poach for 12 hours with only the occasional bubble breaking the surface.

Once cooked, the quince and syrup should be a deep dark-red colour, depending on the quince — in some instances they may even turn almost black. Cool to room temperature and carefully remove the quince using a slotted spoon. Strain the syrup and discard the spices and peel. Add some lemon juice to taste to the syrup (it’s impossible to give an accurate amount as every quince varies so much in flavour and acidity, but the syrup needs a good amount of acid to counter the sweetness of the syrup).

Return the quince to the syrup and set aside until needed. It will keep in the refrigerator for 2 weeks or many months if properly sealed in hot sterilised jars.