Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Quinces roasted in Pineau des Charentes

Remember the opening credits to Quincy M.E.? A recurrent clip is interspersed throughout episode footage (mostly snippets of Quincy in a blind rage, shouting at someone); we’re led to believe that it shows him inspecting a dead body on a post-mortem table. But wait! The camera zooms out to reveal our hero ‘examining’ a bikini-clad lady’s shoulder on a yacht, moored up in a posh harbour! The cad! They toast a pair of gin & tonics - I swear that hers is laced with anaesthetic snaffled from the lab though. He’s not quite right that Quincy is he?

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, click here

Reader, I apologise. I feel that I’ve lured you here under the pretence of offering warming autumnal sustenance, only to digress with talk of a 1970s American TV series*. Many thanks to the lovely Silvana de Soissons for a bagful of gorgeous Quinces - I plan on making a batch of membrillo with the remaining fruit, but couldn’t resist roasting a few up on Sunday for dessert. It’s really worth trying to track down a bottle of Pineau (to drink as well as to cook with); I had the good fortune to visit the Charente Valley in the summer, but Oddbins stock it. Serves 4.

*Which was never a patch on Columbo, I might add.

4 Quinces, quartered and cored

1 Wine glass of Pineau des Charentes (use port or sherry if you can’t get hold of this)

Zest and juice of 1 orange

4Tbsp Honey

6 Cloves

2 Star anise

1 Cinnamon stick, broken up

Vanilla ice cream, to serve

Heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Arrange the quinces in a large baking dish, then add the remaining ingredients. Cook in the oven for about an hour, turning the quinces regularly and spooning the juice over the softening fruit. Serve with scoops of vanilla ice cream.


  1. Oh this image is amazing.
    I had to leave before Silvana's gorgeous quince tree was plundered so am very envious because I haven't been able to find any in supermarkets locally :-(

  2. Stunning photo and so glad to have found your blog. I have some of Silvana's quinces, as well, and plan to do a similar roast quince recipe (might take a clue from yours and add some port to the roasting tin). I also hope to make some jam. Quinces are new to me and they're just lovely. So is your blog!

  3. Wow! Another stunner! Do you know, I arrived at work today and happened to find a quince on my desk, I wonder what I'll do with it...

  4. Who left that Quince on your desk? Some kind of legend I reckon ;) Many thanks for the kind words guys...

  5. I live in the Pineau des Charentes area and love the stuff, so this is a recipe to try....I also have a quince tree, c'est parfait! Would you recommend the white pineau or red for this?
    Karen @ Lavender and Lovage

  6. I used the white; I'm sure red would be just as good though!

  7. Oh, lovely, the perfect dessert to use up the last of my quince harvest. I have no pineau des charentes but I do have port.

  8. Quincy had an eye for the ladies. Also, I got my niece to dance to the theme tune when she was 2. She's 11 now - I must remind her of that.

    I love the stand - it's like the ones we use in Burma for offerings.