Quince and polenta crumble

Perfumed quince and musky spices combine in Matt Tebbutt's delicious crumble
By Matt Tebbutt
Quince and polenta crumble
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4-6
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes plus chilling and infusing
  • Effort: medium


For the crumble

  • 50 g walnuts, toasted
  • 60 g plain flour
  • 40 g polenta
  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 1 pinches salt
  • 2 drops vanilla extract
  • 75 g chilled unsalted butter, diced

For the filling

  • 200 g caster sugar, or to taste
  • 1 vanilla pod, split lengthways
  • 1 orange, pared zest only
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 190 ml muscat dessert wine
  • 3 quince, peeled, cored and sliced


1. For the crumble: blitz the walnuts to fine crumbs in a food processor. Add the flour, polenta, sugar, salt and vanilla and blitz again.

2. Add the chilled butter to the dry ingredients a few pieces at a time. Spread the crumble mixture out on a tray and chill for 30 minutes.

3. Preheat the oven to 160C/gas 3. Break up the crumble a little and bake for 30-40 minutes, until golden. When cool enough to handle, break into smaller pieces again.

4. For the filling: meanwhile combine the sugar, vanilla pod, orange zest, cinnamon, star anise and bay leaf in a saucepan. Pour over the muscat, bring to the boil and simmer until all the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and leave to infuse for 30 minutes.

5. Turn up the oven to 180C/gas 4. Lay the quince slices in a roasting tray and pour over the wine mixture. Roast for 30-40 minutes, until the quince is tender and has turned pink.

6. Spoon the cooked quince into an ovenproof dish and sprinkle the crumble over the top. Return to the oven for 10 minutes. Serve warm with cold cream or custard.

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