Quinces look like blocky, green pears. They are easy to peel:
They look like a pear inside, too. But they feel like an apple that's gone all woody and punk-y. I nibbled a raw piece; they taste like wood, too.
But I trusted Parsons: cooking simply transforms this fruit. Slice up the quince:
Pour over the slices a sugar-water (or sugar-water-wine) syrup infused with cardamom seeds, cinnamon stick, cloves, and orange zest:
Bake the slices in the heavenly, spicy syrup until they turn rosy pink and almost translucent:
Parsons suggests different ways to use the almost-candied quince, including serving it with cheese, or folding into a clafoutis, or stirring into Greek yogurt. I decided to create an apple-quince-cranberry pie:
YUM! The pale slices of apple commingle with the pink slices of quince, studded with the ruby cranberries here and there: