Archives for posts with tag: passionfruit

There is something so satisfying about preserving fruits. Jars, bottles and bowls of jewel coloured delights lined up on the pantry shelf just waiting to add a little something special to a meal.

I have loved my quince obsession and although there were a few ups and downs it resulted in a mountain of membrillo, jars of spiced quinces and bowls of quince curd.  One evening we had a platter of three types of quinces – spiced, curd and membrillo and we served oat cakes and cheese alongside the quince platter.

But my preserving time has not all been devoted to quinces – passion fruits too have been demanding attention.

I am so thrilled with the sprawling passion fruit/granadilla vine that has been bearing fruit continuously since December. Although we are now in mid winter and the plant has been lightly frosted at the top there are  still flowers and buds on the plant as well as between about one and two hundred slowly ripening fruits.  Over the last few weeks I have picked about eighty fruits and have made two batches of passion fruit cordial.

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Passion Fruit Cordial

For every one cup of passion fruit pulp add one cup of water, 3/4 cup of light brown or white sugar and 3 T lemon juice.

Mix together well and bring slowly to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Simmer gently until slightly syrupy.  Strain – or not – and bottle in sterilised bottles. I like to strain about two thirds and mix that with the remaining unstrained one third.

passion fruit cordial

In my search for quince recipes I came across Ouma Babsie’s preserved quince recipe. I loved the fact that in this recipe the quinces are baked whole in the oven, then peeled and sliced before simmering in syrup and bottling. Since I was slow cooking some lamb in the oven it seemed to me to be the perfect time to make Ouma Babsie’s preserved quinces.

I popped the lamb into the oven and dashed out to run some errands knowing that the lamb would be cooking happily for four hours. I got waylaid in book shops and coffee shops but made it safely back home within my four hour time limit. The quinces, I forgot, had only needed two and a half to three hours – not four hours – in the oven. They were luckily fine if somewhat too soft to slice and simmer for Ouma Babsie’s preserved quinces. Very disappointing.

roast quince

I just happened to have a mountain of other quince recipes waiting to be made so after a quick rifle through the pages I found a couple of solutions. One: quince pancakes  which we had for breakfast the following morning. They were delicious both hot for breakfast, at room temperature later in the day and cold the next day.

And two: quince curd. I made it according the the recipe from the British Food Larder.  I pureed the pulp with an immersion blender and then cooked the curd exactly as per their recipe. Heaven. And a serious contender for a winning place in the ongoing war that wages in our household – second place maybe to passiflora edulis.

The pièce de résistance of all the quince cooking was the preserved spiced quinces. We ate the spiced pink slices with cream for dessert and with cheese. And we ate them straight out of the jar, too. We could not get enough of them.

This is a recipe I need to make again – soon. Very soon. This is a recipe I should be posting here. This is a recipe that came out of my head. This is a recipe for which there are no notes. It is a recipe that seemed so obvious. How could I have not written a thing down? This is what I think I did/what I would do next time:

Spiced quinces

  • Make a syrup with a 3:4 ratio (sugar:water) in a heavy bottomed pot (equal weight sugar and fruit?)
  • Add bay leaves, star anise, cloves and cinnamon to the mix while stirring to dissolve the sugar
  • Peel, core and slice the quinces and immerse them in the syrup
  • Bring to the boil
  • Simmer gently until the quinces are soft, the syrup is thick and both the quinces and syrup are beautifully pink – I cooked mine on the Godin fireplace for I think a few hours
  • Bottle in sterilised jars

I was slightly worried that I had overcooked the quinces and that the syrup was going to turn into toffee. When I eventually allowed myself to open a jar I was delighted to find that in fact I had spiced quinces in a quince jelly.

And stupid as I was not to make any notes,  I did at least take a few photographs.

 

 

 

 

 

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There is a war raging in our household and, sadly, I’m not sure if – and when – there will be a winner. The war concerns which fruit curd is best. Most of the household are on the side of  Passiflora edulis, I on the other hand am fence sitting. I have a long-standing and fierce loyalty to  Citrus × limon.

My relationship with that sour and satisfying fruit curd goes way back:

  • To my childhood and the Eureka lemon tree growing valiantly in a barrel on our verandah for thirty odd years – whose fruits provided the lemon curd  for lemon meringue pie (and lemon cordial), year after year after year.
  • To my youthful dinner party years of regularly whipping up a lemon curd brûlée tart as a pièce de résistance. I have long since forgotten where that recipe came from – and I so wish I still had it. I dream of that tart and often wonder if I could recreate it.
  • To memories of sitting on a freezing beach on Islay in the Inner Hebrides in ‘mid-summer’ wearing layers of clothes eating lemon curd spread on oatcakes accompanied by one of the smokiest of whiskies – Laphroaig. Lemon curd on oatcakes with or without Islay whisky (Earl Grey tea is a good accompaniment too) is now a firm favourite in our household.
  • To our family favourite cheesecake recipe  – the lemon curd cheesecake from Donna Hay‘s Flavours.
  • And most recently to my daughter’s lemon curd filled macarons.

However I have been plotting and planing to make a passion fruit (or granadilla as it is known in South Africa) curd for some months now, ever since our self-sown and carelessly transplanted granadilla vine took over our carefully cultivated and nurtured espaliered fig trees and all their trellising wire.  The plant went wild and I realised I needed to start googling passion fruit recipes in a hurry. In the last week I have harvested over a hundred fruits, there are still at least another hundred waiting to be harvested – and daily more and more of the unbelievably intricate and complex flowers bloom waiting to turn into fruits.

We have over the last few weeks had a trickle of fruits every day and have been enjoying stirring the pulp into yoghurt, with or without cubed mango, pecan nuts and/or maple syrup. But you can only eat so many passion fruit in this way so this past weekend I decided it was time to revisit google .

In my search I read a blog post on fruit curds by Neil of British Food: A History and the words ‘Curds don’t just come in lemon yellow of course, you can make one from any fruit that the juice can be easily squeezed from: orange, grapefruit, passion fruit and pineapple…’ which got me thinking about making passion fruit curd. When I went back to the blog post I realised that there wasn’t actually a recipe for passion fruit curd.  I guess I could have modified a lemon curd recipe but there were quite a few recipes online so  I decided to use Sam Linsell’s recipe from Drizzle and Dip as my starting point.  I really liked the fact she had made two versions – one with pips and one without.

In addition to hopefully making a dent in our growing pile of granadillas I was rather pleased to be using a whole lot of the free range eggs we had bought the previous weekend at The Shed on Route 59. We went to The Shed to pick up some seeds for our vegetable garden from the Living Seeds stall and were very keen to buy some things from the other stalls since The Shed seemed to be a nice local community endeavour. We came away quite happy with some ‘onion garlic’, a big wedge of boerenkaas, some dried wors, game biltong and a large tray of eggs.

I decided not to use too many of the pips in my passion fruit curd so I started by extracting the pulp from about 40 passion fruit, heating it gently in a pot and straining the pulp through a coarse sieve while mushing  it around with a spatula.

I am sure the very yellow free range eggs contributed to the deep golden colour of the finished curd.  It was good with vanilla ice cream and fruit, great with Greek yoghurt and best entirely on its own.

In the quest to determine which curd is the winner I’ll be making another batch of passion fruit curd just as soon as I can tear myself away from the computer. Or should I be thinking about a rhubarb or raspberry curd?

Passion fruit curd

  • 450ml strained passion fruit pulp with the unstrained pulp of a couple of fruits
  • 180g butter
  • 1.5 cups of sugar
  • 8 large free range  eggs

Mix the passion fruit pulp, butter and sugar  together in a heavy bottomed pot and heat  slowly until it comes to the boil. Remove from the heat and cool for a couple of minutes while you beat the eggs until light and fluffy. Slowly and continuously whisk the eggs into the hot pulp mixture. Put the pot back on a low heat and continue whisking until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon.  Pour into sterilised jars and seal or  into a bowl and refrigerate until chilled for more or less immediate consumption.