The quince looks kinda like an apple, it is fuzzy like a peach, and has a firm texture like an unripe pear. The fragrance is like a bunch of freshly-picked roses! The fruit even transforms into a gorgeous shade of pink when cooked.
I was fortunate enough to stumble upon this fruit in the yard of a dear friend of mine a few years ago. Her tree produces an abundant crop of quince each season. Every year she kindly and generously shares her harvest with me. Of course, one of my favorite things to do with quince is blend them with apples to make an amazing pie! (here's the link)
This season, I had enough quince to not only make a pie, but I also had enough to make an amazing jam and some nice quince syrup...
Quince Jam and Syrup
Simply clean, peel, core, and slice the fruit.
Add enough water to cover the fruit to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Bring everything to a low simmer.
Add your choice of sweetener to taste. I chose local blackberry honey because I think it compliments the flavor of the quince.
Fresh lemon or orange zest is also a nice touch.
At this point your jam can be canned and processed or simply kept in the refrigerator until gone! The jam will keep in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks. It never lasts that long in my house!
The quince syrup is made by placing the cleaned peel in a pan with just enough water to cover. Bring to a low simmer. Add your choice of sweetener and simmer until thickened.
Quince is very high in pectin. This means that your jam and syrup will not require any additional thickening agents.
I prefer to prepare the quince jam in a "Crock Pot" slow cooker in order to keep the jam from scalding.