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Quince and Almond Crostata


  • 1 litre water

  • 2 cups brown sugar

  • 3 large quinces, cut into quarters

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 8 cloves

  • 4 star anise, optional

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 2 cups plain flour

  • 200g ground almonds (or 125g grated dark chocolate)

  • 125g chilled unsalted butter, cubed

  • 2-3 tablespoons cold water

  • 2 eggs, separated

  • 1/3 cup caster sugar

  • 1 tablespoon raw sugar, for sprinkling

  • double cream, for serving


  • 1.

    Combine water and brown sugar in a large ovenproof saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Add quince, spices and vanilla and simmer covered for 4 hours over low heat or in a slow oven (160C) until quince is soft and ruby red in colour. Allow to cool.

  • 2.

    Place flour and ΒΌ cup ground almonds in a food processor, add butter and blend until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add water, pulsing as necessary, until pastry just comes together.

  • 3.

    Remove and roll out onto a floured surface to a circle approximately 40cm in diameter. Use to line a large flan dish or pizza tray 30cm in diameter, allowing the edges of the pastry to overhang and prick the base with a fork.

  • 4.

    Combine remaining almonds, egg whites and caster sugar and spread over base of pastry.

  • 5.

    Cut quince pieces into slices and arrange decoratively over almond paste, spooning a little cooking syrup on top.

  • 6.

    Turn the overhanging pastry in, covering the edge of the quince, and crimp decoratively. Brush pastry with egg yolk and sprinkle with raw sugar.

  • 7.

    Bake at 200C for 30-40 minutes until pastry is golden. Brush exposed quince with remaining cooking syrup and serve warm or cold with double cream.

  • 8.

    Note: Cooking syrup may be simmered until slightly thickened for serving.


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