First Thing, Daily Maverick's flagship newsletter

Join the 230 000 South Africans who read First Thing newsletter.

Karoo Heartland quince tart



Karoo Heartland quince tart

Tony Jackman's quince tart. (Photo: Louis Pieterse, Kudu Studio)

This recipe uses preserved quince slices of the kind you will find at a good farmstall. It’s sweet, so is best served with plain whipped cream to counter the sweetness.

I made a sweet shortcrust pastry as a base for this quince tart, designed to glorify this splendid and underrated fruit.

Sweet shortcrust pastry

120 g salted butter

30 g castor sugar

1 XL egg yolk

1 tsp vanilla essence

½ tsp lemon juice

190 g plain white flour

¼ tsp salt

Cream the butter and castor sugar with a wooden spoon. Add the egg yolk, vanilla essence, lemon juice and salt and stir to combine. Fold in the sifted flour until just combined. Press the dough together with your hands to form a firm ball. Wrap it in cling film and refrigerate it for an hour or more before use.


⅓ cup brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla essence

2 Tbsp lemon juice

¼ tsp salt

1 scant tsp ground cinnamon

1 jar (about 500 g) sweet preserved quince slices

½ cup quince jelly, melted

Mix together and macerate the quince slices in brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla essence, lemon juice, and salt.

Press the sweet shortcrust pastry into a buttered pie dish, using your fingers to spread it to the edges and up the sides, evenly. Prick the base with a fork. The pastry base does not need to be blind baked.

Lay out preserved quince slices all over the base, packing them tightly. Spoon any remaining brown sugar mixture over the top.

Bake in a preheated 190℃ oven until golden. In my oven this took close to an hour, but keep an eye on it. The pastry needs to be cooked and blond, not too browned.

Melt half a cup of quince jelly gently in a saucepan, whisking until it is clear and runny.

When the tart is cooked, remove it from the oven and spoon the melted jelly over the quince slices and in the gaps between them. As the tart cools, the jelly will set again. It’s a very sweet tart so serve it either with plain, unsweetened cream (runny or whipped) or with a mildly sweet custard. DM/TGIFood

Order products from Heyla Meyer’s Sense of the Karoo on 082 347 3832.


Comments - share your knowledge and experience

Please note you must be a Maverick Insider to comment. Sign up here or sign in if you are already an Insider.

Everybody has an opinion but not everyone has the knowledge and the experience to contribute meaningfully to a discussion. That’s what we want from our members. Help us learn with your expertise and insights on articles that we publish. We encourage different, respectful viewpoints to further our understanding of the world. View our comments policy here.

No Comments, yet

Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted