As I enigmatically alluded in my last post, today I have for you a recipe for a quince cake. This is a puddingy sort of cake, with a close-textured sponge at the bottom, a layer of ground almonds above that, a wheel of golden poached quinces above that, and on top of that a cinnamon and sugar sponge layer. We ate it warm from the oven with a splodge of creme fraiche, which I can highly recommend. The leftovers went to work with Tom, so I don’t know how it fares the next day, though I can’t imagine anything bad coming of sponge and quince and almonds.

It’s not as difficult to make as it may sound – if you’ve baked your quince, you’re away. If you haven’t, it will take a few hours, but I think this is a nice lazy Sunday cake anyway. Alternatively, this recipe came from a Stephanie Alexander plum cake, so you could use any sort of bakeable, cinnamon and nut compatible fruit in place of the quince (i.e. most autumnal fruit).

 

Quince and cinnamon cake

Serves 8-12 (i.e. makes one big cake)

You will need an unusually large cake tin for this recipe – if you don’t have one, you may need to split the mixture between two tins. It rises a lot!

for the topping:
60g butter
110g caster sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 eggs

for the cake:
180g butter, soft
150g caster sugar
135g plain flour
135g self-raising flour
pinch of salt
2 eggs
70ml milk
60g ground almonds
1-2 baked quinces, in wedges

Preheat the oven to 180c and lightly grease a 26cm springform tin, or 2 smaller springform tins.

Make the topping by melting the butter and stirring in the cinnamon and sugar. Allow this mixture to cool a bit before whisking the eggs and stirring in.

Cream the butter and sugar, then stir in the flours and salt. Mix the eggs with the milk, beat lightly and add to the flour mix to make a soft dough. If your eggs were quite small and the mix is stiff, add a touch more milk. Spoon the batter into the tin/s and sprinkle over the ground almonds. Arrange the quince segments in a circular pattern on top and spoon over the cinnamon topping. Bake for 45 minutes – 1 hour, until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

From Stephanie Alexander’s ‘The Cook’s Companion

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