Ayva (quince) dessert has a natural, deep pink reddish color, in fact, there is a color in Turkish named after it, pişmiş ayva rengi (the color of cooked quince). The secret of this color is cooking the quince over a low heat for a long time. Due to its pectin content, the peels and seeds put into the pot during cooking allow the quince dessert to set like crystal glass.
- 6 quince, peeled, cut in half and deseeded
- 120 g sugar
- 75 ml water
- 6 cloves
- Place the quinces with a few seeds and the skin in a large saucepan.
- Add a tablespoon of sugar on top of each of the quince halves and leave for 1 hour.
- Then add the water and the cloves. Simmer for 2-2.5 hours over very low heat until the fruit turns light pink. Turn over the quinces occasionally taking care not to damage them.
- When cooked leave to cool.
- Serve with clotted cream if desired.
Generally, the peels of fruits such as quince or apple are not wasted. They are added to herbal teas or compote, and are also used in making vinegar. Even quince seeds are used to give color and consistency to this dessert. In this respect, quince dessert is a good example of the zero-waste concept of our cuisine.