Quinces are native to the Middle East, and especially popular in Turkey and Iran, where they're transformed into sweet and savory preserves as well as stews and desserts. While they come from the same family as pears and apples, the fruits are often sold in their unripe, astringent state. When cooked, their flesh becomes tender, sweet, and stunning shade of pink. The fruit is high in pectin and their flesh doesn't fall apart during cooking, making it ideal for preserves.
Be sure not to discard the seeds – in Iran, they are dried and used for medicinal purposes. When the dried seeds are soaked in hot water, they give off a thick gel that coats and soothes the throat as a remedy for coughs and colds.
7 quince, sliced into wedges, seeds removed
3 cups sugar
4 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp ground cardamom or 2 green cardamom pods
1 tbsp rose water (optional)
4 cups water
Recipe by Turmeric Saffron
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