Our yellow and aromatic quinces are ready to be transformed into jelly and quince paste (in Spanish called dulce de membrillo).
It’s possible to combine both recipe and this works is really worth!
We got really have a lot of membrillo and I’m trying different ways to use it.
First of all the Spanish way: try it with cheese. We served this as side dish to raclette!
That’s not all, but I used it as rolls filling, as side to corned beef or small sweets (fiiling hot membrillo in toffe molds and coating with white chocolate).
I prepared juice (for the jelly) using a steam-juicer, but I will give you the instruction for “regular” pots as well.
- 1 lemon, juice only (for every 2 kg quinces)
Collection juice and pulp:
- Wash, peel (optional) and core the quince reserving the cores and peels. For this step I slice the fruits tangentially (see photo) the quinces without cutting through the core as this very hard. Wrap firmly cores and peels (both have a high content of pectin) in cheesecloth forming a bag. If you don’t peel the quinces wrap only the cores.
- To get the juice you can use the steam-juicer (according product instructions) or place the quinces in a pot add the cheesecloth bag and add water until almost covered. Drizzle with lemon juice.
- Cook at low temperature until very soft (this takes about one hour depending on the quince variety).
- Place a metal strainer over a pan and line with cheesecloth. Mash the pulp and ladle the pulp into the strainer and leave to drain for 3-4 hours or better overnight until all the juice has drained out.
With the steam-juicer I can simply switch off the heat and collect juice the day after. If you have a big quantity of quinces, you will have to collect from time to time the juice from the steamer and set it aside. Remove cheesecloth bag.
Now you have the juice for the jelly and the pulp for the quince paste/membrillo.
Procedure for the jelly:
- Measure the amount of juice you have and add 500g of sugar for each 600 ml of juice.
- Bring the juice and sugar to a boil. Stir the mixture constantly until the sugar is dissolved.
- Skim the foam from time to time and reserve the foam for the membrillo.
- Check if the jelly is ready: poor a half teaspoon of the juice onto a chilled (best from the freezer) plate. It is ready when it’s wrinkling when pushed with your finger.
- Fill the jelly into sterilized jars using a ladle. The cooked jelly is very hot, so be careful as you lower it into the jars. Fill each one to about 1 cm below the rim. For this step I use a large funnel.
- Turn the jars upside down for a few minutes and invert them again. This is my way to sterilize the jars, you can do it as you are used to do!
- Allow them to cool completely. Sometimes the jelly jells as it cools, but sometimes it sets only during storage.
Procedure for the dulce de membrillo:
- Measure the amount of pulp you have, place it in a big pot and add the same quantity of sugar. Add foam collected during the jelly preparation.
- Cook at low heat stirring until sugar is dissolved. Continue to cook stirring frequently for about for about 1 ½ hours until it becomes very thick and reddish. Draw the wooden spoon along the bottom of the saucepan: it should leave a trail and the quince mixture will stick to the spoon. Remove from the heat and eventually use a blender to make it smoother.
- If it is very dry and it sets immediately when you poor a half spoon on a chilled plate you can fill it in molds (wrapped with foil).
- If it is not firm enough you can preheat the oven to 80°C, line a pan with parchment paper and lightly grease this with butter. Pour the paste into the prepared pan, smoothing the top and then cook for about 2-3 hours with the lid of the oven slightly open. Remove from the oven and let it cool completely.
- Wrap the paste in fresh baking parchment, then over-wrap in foil and store in the fridge.