There is a folk song in Turkish culture. It starts with “Quince trees bloom, is Summer close?” In fact, this is a love song and it has no direct relation with quince, but I always remember that song whenever this fruit starts to take its place on the stands at markets. As you can understand from that folk song, a quince tree blooms towards Summer and it bears fruit in Autumn. It is also possible to find this fruit in Winter here. It is a very popular fruit in Turkey. Moreover, Turkey is the top country growing quince around the world with a 35% portion.
We use quince in several ways, making quince jam, quince compote, quince dessert even dried quince in cakes or compotes again. We benefit not only from the fruit but also from its leaves, blooms and seeds as a cure for several illnesses. The fruit is very rich in vitamins, especially vitamin C, so it becomes a perfect protective fruit against cold and cough when you eat it fresh. Also, you can boil its seeds or blooms with milk or water to protect from cold and cough. And if you’re looking for a cure for your stomach ache, boil its leaves in water and drink it.
I can’t think of a person who don’t love this extremely beneficial fruit. When it’s the quince season, we often make its dessert. It’s so easy and scrumptious. If you love light desserts, here is the recipe.
• 2 quinces
• 4 tbsp sugar
• 1 ½ cup water
• A few cloves
• Cream for garnish
Peel the quinces and cut them into two. Discard the seeds, but don’t throw them away. We’ll use them beacuse they give the red color to the dessert. If it’s an Autumn quince the red color is more vivid. Some people use food dye for this color, but I don’t prefer it. Its own seeds give enough color and of course I’m always in favor of natural things.
Pour the water in a pot. Put the quinces in it and place 1 tbsp sugar on each half as you see in the picture. Add the seeds for color and a few cloves for a nice aroma. Put the lid on the pot and bring it to boil.
When it starts to boil, lower the heat to minimum and boil it for one and a half hour. Do not try to stir it with a spoon, just shake the pot a few times.
To serve it, take one half of quince on a plate and garnish it with some cream. You may also garnish it with some walnut or pistachio, or you may prefer it plain.