Quince Jelly with Star Anise
You'd never guess from the floral flavor of rose-colored quince jelly that raw quince is quite tart. The jelly, finished here with star anise for a hint of licorice (a classic pairing), makes a good match for silken chicken-liver pate.
- 4 pounds slightly underripe quinces, washed well and cut into pieces
- 7 cups water
- 4 cups sugar
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 or 2 star anise
Place quinces in a large saucepan. Add water, and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook, covered, until dark pink and very soft, about 3 hours.
Pass through a fine sieve, pressing out liquid; discard solids. (You should have 4 cups liquid. If you don't, adjust the amount of sugar used in step 3 to maintain a 1:1 ratio.)
Bring quince juice, sugar, lemon juice, and star anise to a simmer in a large saucepan over high heat. Cook, skimming foam, until thick and a candy thermometer registers 220. Plate-test jelly to make sure it is set. Divide between four 1/2-pint-size sterilized glass jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace at tops. Can in water bath for 10 minutes. Let stand overnight to fully set before using.