Autumn Quince and Apple Crumble

You have probably noticed that there are not so many dessert recipes on my blog. There are several reasons for this.  First of all, I don´t really have a sweet tooth, and as I´m the cook in this house, if you want sweet, there´s always chocolate in the larder!  Secondly, and perhaps most importantly, Big Man and I do need to be a bit sensible about the calories – so dessert is a special treat for us rather than an everyday occurrence.  Finally, Spain doesn´t really have a culture of home made desserts.  Yes, we have our Flan (Crême Caramel), Arroz con Leche (Rice Pudding) and Natillas (Cold Custard) but mostly it´s a piece of fruit to finish the meal. As we are able to get hold of such delicious seasonal fruit, that´s mainly what we eat and enjoy.

Having said that, quince are now in season, and we´ve made our annual supply of Quince Jelly or Carne de Membrillo. Our kindly neighbour is still providing us with a couple of quince (or is that quinces?) as the last few ripen and a nearby village has some delicious sweet, crunchy apples…which make a lovely change from the usual inspid, spongey monsters that are typically available to us.

Sunday lunch recently, after a hard morning´s work on the house and garden, most definitely warranted a delicious dessert and I must have been feeling nostalgic for England.  I decided to make a delicious autumnal crumble with quince and apple and to serve it with hot creamy custard.


  • 1 large quince peeled and chopped (or one large sour cooking apple)
  • ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons of honey and 1 tablespoon of water

Put the above ingredients into a saucepan with a lid and simmer until soft and all the liquid has evaporated

Peel and slice two large apples and stir into the cooked quince and sprinkle over 1 teaspoon of mixed spice.  If you like your desserts sweet, add brown sugar to taste.

For the crumble

  • One cup of plain flour, half a cup of oats, 100g grams of grated chilled butter and half a cup of brown sugar.

Put all the above ingredients into a food processor and blitz for a few seconds until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. You can also do this by hand.

Put the fruit mixture into a pie dish, cover with the crumble topping and bake on high for about 30-40 minutes until slightly browned on top.  Some of the fruit mixture is likely to bubble out and caramelize, so I recommend putting your pie dish onto a baking tray lined with foil.

Serve with custard and fight your nearest and dearest for the crispy caramelized bits.  Serves four.  ¡Buen provecho!


32 thoughts on “Autumn Quince and Apple Crumble

  1. I don’t make desserts much either, having been brought up with the Mediterranean fruit-eating customs, but this does look like a delicious way to use up those quinces left over after making membrillo!

  2. That looks sooo good…the quince must bring a whole new flavor to an old-fashioned crumble.

    Despite the number of sweet recipes on my blog, we don’t have dessert that often either. But, those are the recipes my kids ask for, so that’s what I do…

    (I also have a 20-year-old son to send the leftovers home with!)

  3. That sounds delicious – I very much like crumbles, which strangely has become Frenchified as “le crumble” appears on so many menus. I’m the same about desserts, but I mostly make them to photograph and then they get taken to the nearby grandchildren for finishing up.

  4. It seems that a lot of us don’t have that many sweet desserts. My husbands favorite part of a fruit crumble or crip as New Englanders call it is naturally the crumble that has gotten extra crispy from the bubbling furit juices. Put your custard over the top and it takes to a new dimension.

  5. This is my kind of dessert! I love fruit filled, not overly sweet desserts! And this is so comforting! Love to have that served warm with the custard! I’ll be stopping by soon!!

  6. Wow that looks great! I’ll bet the bitterness of the quince works really well… I might have to make this tomorrow! Btw, what is the “larder” lol? And I feel you about the apples here… I don’t know how it is where you are from but Fall in Massachusetts isn’t complete with trips to various apple orchards and buying bags of endless delicious varieties… the things we give up! Great post as usual!!!

    1. Hi Lauren and thanks so much for your kind words! Another word for larder is pantry or despensa in Spanish – basically a large store room (or cupboard) for groceries…and I love mine as it´s full of pickles and jams. Apples here are mainly enormous and flavourless, but a nearby village has a few people who grow some gorgeous crispy ones – although they are not sharp in flavour which I really enjoy 😦

  7. Well, I will admit to having a sweet tooth. There, I said it! The thing is, I don’t indulge it very often. I know that if I bake, cook, or buy something sweet, I am the one, the only one, to eat it. It’s one thing to have a piece of pie or cake. It’s something else entirely when you have an entire cake to eat. Having said that, this crumble looks just incredible and, with only 4 servings, I could handle that — easily!

  8. Oh I love a crumble. Especially with an oaty topping. I’m definitely going to have to hunt down some quinces. This looks amazing. Hang the calories!

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