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Cranberry Quince Sorbet

Quinces are in season, and this year I mean to take advantage of it. Quinces are like apples’ upscale cousins – tarter, rosier, more gussied up and elegant. While the apple is available right here, right now, the quince must be cooked for a long time until its pale flesh turns a ruddy hue and its lush sweetness is fully evoked. The apple wants you without hesitation, but the quince must be seduced.

When picking a quince, choose the yellowest-skinned fruit you can find. The green fuzzy ones aren’t quite ripe yet – not that you could tell by tasting, since even a ripe quince is too tart to eat raw.

To make this sorbet, we had to simmer the quince down with sugar, water, and vanilla for a long while before adding in the cranberry, running it through a food mill, then chilling and churning the resulting puree. It’s a slow process, but it doesn’t require much supervision, and the final product is well worth the wait.

This is a sorbet, a real vegan treat, but when you put it in your mouth, it’s hard to believe that it contains no dairy. The creaminess is astounding.

In fact, this is my entry for Vegan Ventures, where Tasty Palettes is gathering up vegan recipes this month.

(Not being vegan myself, though, I prefer to eat it with a rich, decadent, dairy-laden chocolate sauce drizzled on top.)

I think Dave plans on making a savory, warm version of this as a cranberry quince sauce for Thanksgiving.

Cranberry Quince Sorbet
3 quinces
3/4 C sugar
1 vanilla bean
1 C water
4 oz cranberries
1/4 C Nocino della Cristina walnut liquor (or any other liquor you may prefer)

Peel and core the quince, and cut into chunks. Put it in a small saucepan. Slice the vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape the seeds into the pot, then throw the rest of the bean in after them. Add the water and sugar, stir everything together, and simmer until the quinces turn a lovely pink. Add the cranberries, and continue to simmer until they become tender.

Push the whole mess of stuff through a food mill or fine mesh strainer. Chill in your fridge, then stir in the liquor.

Churn according to your ice cream maker’s regular instructions.

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15 Responses to “Cranberry Quince Sorbet”

  1. Suganya says:

    Sorbet, during fall? But that is when you get quince. You have beautifully tied down the flavours of fall, in this recipe. And I love it. Thank you so much for participating.

  2. Julie says:

    Stunning color and it sounds delicious. I think it would make a good dessert for Thanksgiving; after eating all the heavy, rich foods that are traditionally associated with Thanksgiving, something that’s sweet but neither heavy nor rich is perfect.

  3. Lydia says:

    So beautiful! I can’t quite imagine the combination of cranberry and quince, so I’m just going to have to make it and taste for myself. Thanks for the recipe.

  4. Graeme says:

    I’m never going to seduce a Quince, but I do love the idea of Vanilla going in there.

    Great stuff.

  5. Hillary says:

    Looks so delicious – I love everything cranberry flavored, which is why Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays!

  6. Annemarie says:

    Fantastic first picture. I can imagine this being a nice, soothing end to a meal of Thanksgiving excesses.

  7. Tartelette says:

    I love quince and if there was way to show you hopw much…I would squeeze my screen real tight right now!! This is the perfect end to an utumn meal and I bet a savory cranberry quince sauce would be awesome for T-day!

  8. Dana says:

    I LOVE quince. Every fall I say I’m going to make a slew of quince desserts, and then I only end up making 1 or 2. This year will be different — especially when there are recipes like this to make!

  9. jubilant cerise says:

    I moved into a place with a quince tree earlier this year and made jelly with it: I can imagine what the sorbet is like… :)

  10. I love sorbet…always order them at restaurants but have never tried cranberries + quinces…in fact, I don’t even know what quinces are…will keep my eyes open when I go shopping the next time. :P

  11. Rosa says:

    What a wonderful combination! That sorbet must taste really fine!

    Happy Thanksgiving!



  12. Danielle says:

    Suganya – When it’s chilly out, and the streets are full of fallen leaves, and you are cozy in your home with the heater and stove on, sorbet is not so bad a way to end a day.

    Julie, Annmarie – You’re right, that does sound wonderful.

    Lydia – You’re welcome, and thank you! Please let me know how it goes when you make it.

    Graeme – What, you prefer fruit that admits directly to wanting you? ~.^

    Hillary – Cranberries are so underutilized, I think!

    Tartelette – The sauce was a hit! But how about you squeeze me if ever we meet, instead?

    Dana – I hope to see all the recipes you try this year posted on your blog, so I can play along at home!

    jubilant cerise – Oh, oh, I am so envious of you.

    RM- I wish I could be there to see the look on your face when you try your first quince.

    Rosa – Happy Thanksgiving!

  13. Mike says:

    I’ve never had a quince before, but that sorbet looks awesome. This post is one more reason why I need to buy an ice cream maker already…

  14. Dayna says:

    I’ve just gotten myself into all things quince and this sounds delightful! I think I will have to add this to my “make” list.

  15. dane says:

    Thanks for the idea. I modified the recipe a little with orange juice, blueberries and frozen quince sauce… and it turned out wonderful.

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