Over the next 13 weeks, I'll be attempting a 1920s-inspired dinner to match Miss (Phryne) Fisher's Murder Mystery on ABC TV each Friday night. Most of these recipes first appeared in Melbourne's Argus or the Sydney Morning Herald in the 1920s. Since hotel dining rooms, restaurants and cafes invariably offered French dishes, I've also sourced recipes from Recipes of Boulestin and other French cookbooks of the period.
Sunday, February 26, 2012
Considered an old-fashioned fruit except, perhaps, in Adelaide, quinces need a lot of sugar to counteract their acidity, but have a deep red colour and dusky flavour. The quinces can be cooked a day or two beforehand, and kept refrigerated. Spices are optional, but I added half a dozen cracked cardamon pods.
2 cups sugar
200 ml cream
Take the quinces, wipe and quarter them. Place the quinces in a preserving pan with 2 cups of sugar (or to taste), spices in a bag if liked, and 3 cups of water. Bring to the boil, skim and simmer for 3 to 4 hours. Rub the quinces through a sieve and refrigerate the puree until needed.
Put the quince puree in the freezer for 15 minutes before serving. Whip cream with 1 tablespoon sugar, gently fold in the puree and serve in custard glasses or a glass dish.
If I made this again, I'd change the quince puree/whipped cream ratio and use four quinces rather than three.