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Quince brown Betty

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for quince brown Betty.

By Emma Knowles
  • 40 mins preparation
  • 6 hrs cooking plus standing
  • Serves 8
  • Print
Quince brown Betty


  • 60 gm cold butter, coarsely chopped
  • Scraped seeds of 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 loaf sourdough fruit bread (about 680gm), crusts removed, coarsely chopped
  • 70 gm dried sour cherries
  • 50 gm demerara sugar
  • 60 gm hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
  • Finely grated rind of 1 orange and 1 lemon
  • 50 gm brown sugar
  • 25 gm plain flour
  • 2 quince, cut into eighths
  • To serve: heavy cream (45% milk fat) or vanilla ice-cream
Poached quince
  • 660 gm caster sugar (3 cups)
  • 250 ml dessert wine
  • Thinly peeled rind and juice of 1 orange and 1 lemon
  • 3 cinnamon quills
  • 1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped
  • 4 quince, cut into eighths, peel and cores reserved


  • 1
    Preheat oven to 120C. For poached quince, bring sugar, dessert wine, rinds, juices, cinnamon, vanilla and 750ml water to the boil in a saucepan, stir to dissolve sugar, transfer to a roasting pan. Add quince, cover closely with a piece of baking paper, then spread peel and cores on top. Cover with foil, bake until quince is rosy and tender (4-5 hours), remove quince. Strain and reserve liquid (discard solids).
  • 2
    Meanwhile, cook butter in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until nut brown (3-4 minutes), add vanilla seeds and set aside.
  • 3
    Simmer cherries and 100ml quince poaching liquid in a saucepan over medium-high heat until cherries are plump (2-3 minutes) and set aside.
  • 4
    Pulse bread in a food processor to very coarse crumbs, combine in a bowl with hazelnuts, demerara sugar and rinds, spread half the mixture in a 1.5-litre baking dish.
  • 5
    Increase oven to 180C. Combine brown sugar and flour in a large bowl, add poached quince, raw quince, cherry mixture and 150ml quince poaching liquid, toss to combine well. Spread in baking dish, then scatter with remaining breadcrumb mixture. Drizzle with browned butter, cover with foil, bake for 30 minutes, remove foil and bake until crumbs are crisp (10-15 minutes). Stand for 15 minutes then serve hot with cream or ice-cream.