quince almond cake

by Stevie on December 10, 2010

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The recipe for this marvelous quince and almond quick bread comes from the delightful Chocolate and Zucchini. I’ve recently stumbled across Clotilde’s site and have been a fan since. According to her “about,” she’s French and lives in the Montmartre neighborhood of Paris. Already that seems pretty glamorous, sitting as I do in my apartment in chilly, cloudy San Francisco. I’m amazed by many of her recipes as well as her modesty about them, as she is obviously a very talented chef. In fact, she has published a book and has been able to quit whatever job she was doing before to become a full-time food writer.

quince almond cake

quince almond cake

I’ve never made anything with quince before. I probably wouldn’t have made this bread, either, had we not bumped into a grocery that stocked the fruit fresh. It is not that common here from what I can tell.

I really enjoy working with a new key ingredient. Clotilde warns her readers to be careful about cutting fresh quince. I didn’t quite get the admonition until I prepared my own. These things, even when completely ripe, are incredibly tough! It would be very easy to accidentally cut off your whole hand! Be careful.

I improvised on some of her directions. For example, I did not have fresh vanilla pods so used some extract while poaching the quince. Also I sort of guessed on some of the quantities of things. For example, I ended up using one cup of yogurt which I think now was more than she recommended. Perhaps that is why my bread needed more time in the oven? I baked mine for about an hour but even so, part of the middle wasn’t quite done. Well, live and learn. Hegui’s convinced that if I had let the quince, yogurt and eggs get to room temperature before using them that the cake would have baked completely in the time that C recommended (40 minutes). Maybe so.

fresh quince

fresh quince

quince almond cake

2 fresh, ripe quince
¼ tsp vanilla
¼ cup brown sugar

1 2/3 cups flour
¾ cup ground almonds (I used whole almonds and pulverized them in a food processor)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup plain yogurt
splash of rum
coarse sugar to sprinkle on top

To poach quince:

Peel quince with a vegetable peeler. Carefully cut quince into quarters and remove seeds, stems and inner fibrous parts. Cut quarters into about ½ inch cubes. Put cut cleaned quince into pressure cooker with vanilla and brown sugar. Cover with just enough water to submerge fruit. Cook for thirty minutes after pressure cooker starts to whistle. The fruit released a wonderful aroma while cooking and came out a stunning deep reddish color. Remove and allow to cool. Refrigerate overnight.

poached quince

poached quince

To prepare cake:

Preheat oven to 360F. Cover an 11-inch baking dish with wax or parchment paper. I used a glass oval shaped dish.

Drain quince and chop coarsely.

Mix flour, almonds, baking powder, baking soda and salt together. In a separate bowl, beat eggs and sugar together for a couple minutes. Add yogurt, rum and vegetable oil to egg mixture. Stir to incorporate. Fold quince into egg mixture. Gradually mix dry ingredients into moist. Once everything is wet, pour into baking dish. Sprinkle with coarse sugar. (I didn’t have this so used more regular sugar to sprinkle on top.)

Bake about one hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool. Remove from dish and peel wax paper away. Serve. We had this as an after dinner treat and for breakfast. Yum!

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Monet December 11, 2010 at 7:54 am

I have never made anything with quince before (I don’t think I’ve even tried it!) But this cake looks just delicious! I adore almond cakes, so I know that this would probably be a real winner in my house. Thank you for being brave and experimenting…now I get to benefit from your courage! I hope you have a wonderful Saturday!

Tom @ Tall Clover Farm March 7, 2011 at 7:44 am

Nice to find this recipe (among others) on your site. I grow quince and am always looking for a new way to showcase (read EAT) them. Cheers, Tom
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Stevie March 7, 2011 at 11:55 am

Tom, you’re so fortunate to have a quince tree (or trees?) The fruit has such a marvelous aroma and subtle flavor. Certainly this cake is exceptional. Do you make preserves from them?

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