Serves 4

You're more likely to find quinces in Greek or Turkish shops or a friend's garden than in a greengrocer. They need plenty of cooking and suit spices like cloves and cinnamon.

You're more likely to find quinces in Greek or Turkish shops or a friend's garden than in a greengrocer. They need plenty of cooking and suit spices like cloves and cinnamon.

3-4 quinces weighing 1.2kg-1.3kg, peeled, quartered and the core cut out
150g sugar
1 stick of cinnamon
6 cloves
Juice of 1 lemon
1 small egg, beaten
1tbsp granulated sugar

for the pastry

120g plain flour
30g butter, cut into small pieces
30g lard, cut into small pieces
30g caster sugar
1 egg yolk
Water to mix

Put the quince in a saucepan with the sugar, cloves, cinnamon and lemon juice. Cover well with water, bring to the boil and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour until they are soft and tender. You may need to top up the water.

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 5. Drain over a bowl into a colander then return the liquid to a pan and simmer until it's reduced by about half and thickened.

Lay the quince into a pie dish, or individual ones, and pour over the reduced syrup.

For the pastry, rub the butter and lard into the flour with your fingers to form a breadcrumb-like consistency. Add the sugar, egg yolk and a little water to make a moderately soft dough. Knead lightly for a minute then roll out on a floured table to about 1/2cm thick and slightly larger than the pie dish. Leave in the fridge for 30 minutes.

If you are using a large pie dish you may want to put a pie funnel in the centre. With the funnel poking through the pastry the steam can be let out keeping the pastry crisp. Lay the pastry over the quinces overlapping the edges of the pie dish by 1cm or so then trim the excess with a small knife. Brush the top with beaten egg and scatter over the granulated sugar. Bake the pie or pies for 35-40 minutes or until golden. Serve with thick cream or custard.

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