These quince are from a farmers market, because the one neighborhood quince tree was cut down, sadly. I am hopeful that our Co-op will find another quince tree, they are often neglected and misunderstood. Quince look something like a knobby pear or a misshapen apple, with an aroma that combines the best of those two fruits with a distinctive, elusive, spicy rose fragrance. Some people like to simply keep a ripe quince in a room to subtly scent the air.
I did keep these for a week in the fruit basket so they could reach their full potential. Once they were fully ripe, I used them to make chunky preserves, jelly, and a jar of fruit pectin to help future Co-op fruits less fortunate in that department. Quince have a very high pectin content, as well as a lower water content, so your final yield is closer to original measures. Ten quince were scrubbed thoroughly. The peels and cores were used to make a jar of fruit pectin, the cooked fruit solids made a chunky preserve, and the strained liquid made jelly. Lemons were used not only for the acidulated water bath, but added to the pectin, jelly and preserves. The peel from those lemons was used to start a batch of limoncello. Ten quince and six lemons with 5 cups of sugar yielded one large jar of pectin (about 2 cups), one pint of jelly, three and a half pints of preserves, and one 750 ml bottle of limoncello. Extracting every bit of flavor and pectin, this was all that was left over: