Quince Dessert, in Turkish ‘Ayva Tatlısı’, is a delicious dessert that is simply made with seasonal Quince Fruit. You can find quince fruit from September to early January at every Turkish market. During these months, most of the Turkish restaurants add this magnificent dessert to their menus because Turkish customers know it is quince season.
You may notice some of these desserts in Turkish restaurants serve in a variety of colors such as burgundy. It is because some of the chefs are using artificial food coloring while making them. I am not a fan of using artificial food coloring methods during cooking.
Instead of using artificial food coloring, we can use natural techniques to give color to our desserts. In this case, using pomegranate juice will help us to give some reddish color to the quince dessert. Between September and January months, it is also time for pomegranate fruit in Turkey.
The trick to make a delicious quince dessert lies in the cooking method. This fruit is a very hard fruit considering apple and peach fruits. For this reason, if you are going to use quince fruit in your desserts or dishes, you need to cook it longer than the other fruits so that it becomes soft and easy to get a fragrant taste.
Where to eat Quince Dessert?
If you come to Istanbul for any occasion between September and January and want to enjoy the Bosporus view with this dessert, I recommend you to stop by at the ‘Lacivert’ restaurant. They have delicious seafood and quince dessert.
- 3 Quinces medium size
- 1 Pomegranate medium size
- 8 cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 cups water
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 150 gr sugar
Wash and peel quinces. And then cut them into half and remove the seeds and their seed beds. (Do not discard the seeds and peels of quinces). Rub the peeled quince halves with the lemon juice to help quince not to turn dark color.
Cut a thin slice at the bottom of each quince slightly to let their bottom to be flat so they stand still in the pan. Make ready the pomegranate juice and set a side.
Place the quince halves in a way that the core side looking upward. Place the seeds and cloves evenly in the center of each quince halves.
Spread the sugar evenly over the quince halves. Pour the 2 cups of water and pomegranate juice to the pan and put cinnamon stick in the pan and close the lid.
Bring the pan to a boil and then reduce the heat to low level and cover the pan. Simmer for about 40 minutes and then flip the halves gently for additional 40 minutes cook. The quinces color will turn to a dark pink color and the syrup will become thicker.
Once quinces are cooked, turn off the heat and let the fruits cool inside the pan. Once the pan cool, place the quince halves on a serving plate, with a scoop of clotted cream. Add some crushed pistachio or walnuts over the clotted cream and serve.
Tip: Serve with clotted cream and crushed pistachios and/or walnuts.