Christmas quince crumble

Serves 6-8
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Indy Lifestyle Online

What I thought I should do here is create something on the easy side but add a forgotten fruit into the mix. This can be made and assembled the day before.

For the pastry
1 medium egg yolk
110g unsalted butter, softened
1tbsp caster sugar
140g plain flour

For the filling

4 quince
1 cinnamon stick
6 cloves
1 bay leaf
250g sugar
150g good quality mincemeat
5-6tbsp cranberry sauce

For the crumble topping

80g unsalted butter, diced small
60g caster sugar
150g plain flour
20g pumpkin seeds
20g flaked almonds
20g pine nuts
20g pecans, halved
Clotted cream, to serve

First make the pastry: beat the egg yolks and butter together in a bowl then beat in the sugar. Stir in the flour and knead together until well mixed.

Wrap the pastry in clingfilm and leave in the fridge for an hour before use.

Meanwhile, halve the quince and place in a saucepan with the cinnamon, cloves, bay leaf and sugar. Cover with water and a disc of greaseproof paper, bring to the boil and simmer gently for about an hour or until the quinces are tender.

Lightly grease a 26cm x 2-3cm deep flan or tart tin, preferably with a removable base. Roll the pastry on a floured table to about 1/3cm thick and line the tin, trimming the top by rolling the rolling pin over it. Patch up any holes with extra pastry as this pastry can be a bit temperamental (although it is forgiving none the less), then pinch up the edges of the pastry with your thumb and forefinger and refrigerate for an hour.

Pre-heat the oven to 180C/gas mark 5.

Line the flan tin with a circle of greaseproof or silicone paper and fill with baking beans and bake for 20 minutes or until the pastry is just starting to colour. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.

For the crumble topping rub the flour and butter between your fingers until it looks like breadcrumbs (you can do this in a food processor if you wish), then fold in the sugar and nuts.Remove the core from the quince and cut into rough 1-2cm chunks; mix with the mincemeat.

To assemble, spread the cranberry sauce on the base of the tart case, then spoon in the quince mixture. Spread the crumble topping evenly over the top about 1cm thick or so and bake for about 30 minutes or until the topping is lightly coloured. Serve with clotted cream.

Anthony Rose recommends

2006 Domaine Bellegarde, Juranon Moelleux, Tradition

Juranon, from the Pyrenean corner of France's south-west, produces lusciously rich sweet wines that can rival sauternes for quality, though not renown. This exotic sweet white is made from the local gros manseng and petit manseng grapes, producing a refreshingly tangy yet concentrated, grapefruity pudding wine that will go down a treat with Mark's quince crumble. 6.10, half-bottle, 10.10, bottle, Yapp Bros, Mere, Wilts (01747 860423)

2001 Tokaji Aszu 5 Puttonyos

One of the best pudding wines for fruit tarts and crumbles such as quince, apple, pear and apricot is Hungary's exotic Tokaji, whose unique blend of the indigenous Harslevelu and Furmint grapes supplies both sweet richness and incisive acidity, rather like the pudding itself. This sumptuous confection, tasting of concentrated dried apricots with a marmaladey tang to it, is just the thing, and at 11.5 per cent alcohol, it's not overweight. 14.99 for 50cl, Marks & Spencer

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