Thursday, November 11, 2010

Quince and Cinnamon Muffins

I love these muffins. They don't look perfect (c'mon - they're in pirate themed paper! How could they be anything otherwise!) but I blame my own tendency to go overboard with fruit... not that a few dimpled muffin-tops are going to stop me from doing that. (I could make so many smartass comments about muffin-tops right now, but I'm going to restrain myself.) They're just made according to my basic "unkillable" mix, which is completely versatile, but with cubes of cooked quince and a generous amount of cinnamon in the middle. I also think that some kind of alcohol would have been amazing, but unfortunately, all I had was gin. I'm a gin kind of woman, what can I say? I'd like to think that that says great things about my personality... because, you know, there's that line about women and gin going together like the devil and sin. But if you missed that reference, just ignore it. Keep calm and carry on.

That said, quinces are an amazing fruit. I'm the first person to admit that quinces are a pain in the ass to prepare, however. They have an uneven shape, which means that frequently they're difficult to peel - especially if you're like me, and you're using a peeler, in order to pare away as little fruit as possible. I want the skin gone, sure, but the rest is all for me. Oh, except the core: that's the other section that will annoy you. Make sure that you remove the core thoroughly, because the outer core sections are really gritty, and if they're left in then the texture will get on your nerves. Quinces should be smooth and delicate, not gritty. If you're going to bother cooking a quince, make sure you bother to do it right.

I just simmered mine in plain water, but feel free to add sugar to taste. I'm a huge fan of having a sweet muffin or cake with sour pieces of fruit dispersed throughout, because I love the contrast of flavours and textures. Speaking of which, in the next few days, hopefully I'll have some pictures of cranberry and vanilla cake to share with you... it's just a matter of having the time to bake it. I'll get around to it soon, I promise! In the meantime, make the basic cake mix according to the link above, but use cooked (veeery well-drained) quinces in place of berries, and spice your batter liberally with cinnamon, nutmeg, or mixed spice. Use any leftover quince in crumble, or blend for quittenmus. Then devour them with a warm cup of tea, or coffee, or soymilk with cinnamon (so delicious) so that you can warm your hands... cake truly is a food for every season. ;)

2 comments:

  1. I love this! I made quince muffins last year. And today we bought some really huge quinces.

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  2. Lucky!! I went extra-early to the markets this morning, but there weren't any quinces this week. :( Makes me sad. But that's ok, because I made apfelmus out of golden delicious apples the other day... so addictive! Yum!

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