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Marmalatha Kythoni: Quince Jam

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Quince jam in jar with fruit, close up
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In Greek: μαρμαλάδα κυδώνι, pronounced mahr-mah-LAH-thah kee-THOH-nee

This jam is all natural: no additives, no preservatives. Quinces, sugar, and a little lemon juice create a light jam, perfect for toast, as a filling for croissants, and as a condiment. Don't throw out the liquid from the first boil. Use it to make Quince Jelly. Quince is a member of the rose family and to me, tastes the way I think roses would taste.

Ingredients:

  • 4 1/2 pounds of quince
  • 1 3/4 pounds of sugar (just under 4 cups)
  • 4 tablespoons of water + 1 cup of water
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice

Preparation:

    Note: To change quantities: 2 parts peeled and seeded quince to 1 part sugar, by weight.

Clean the quince the way you would an apple, peeling and removing the seeds. Cut into small chunks and put into a bowl of water. Quince will turn dark if not covered with water. Drain and transfer to a pot with water just to the top of the quince. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for 30 minutes, turn off heat, and leave the pot on the stove for 30 minutes.

Drain off liquid into another pot to make Quince Jelly or discard.

Place fruit in the food processor bowl with 4 tablespoons of water and pulp for 8 seconds. The consistency should be similar to chunky applesauce. Transfer to a large saucepan, add sugar and 1 cup of water, and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon to prevent sticking and browning. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring frequently, until the jam melds, excess liquid cooks off, and the jam drops from a spoon in chunks.

Add lemon juice, stir for 5 minutes, and remove from heat. Allow to cool for 30 minutes, then transfer to jars with airtight lids. When the jam has cooled completely, seal the jars. The jam can be stored for up to a year and the color of the jam will darken over time to varying shades of red.

Yield: about 3-4 cups

    Note: If the jam starts sticking to the pan and browning, remove from heat immediately and pour into a bowl. Use a spoon to remove brown parts, transfer to a clean pot and continue to cook.

In Greece, we cook lamb and pork with quince, so the taste of this jam goes well as a condiment with lamb and pork roasts.

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