There are few artisan producers in town that I follow closer than Quince & Apple.
Not only is their product one of my favorite holiday gifts to give—especially to those not from the area—but I find the owners, Matt & Clare, to be super charming. I say that having never met them in person but knowing a lot about their taste, their political views, and having seen photos of their adorable children. It’s enough to know that these people are my people. Internet friends are for real.
Ironically, we both live in the same neighborhood (only a couple blocks away) and have quite a few mutual friends, but I’ve yet to shake hands with either of them. Seems like running a successful business and having two kids is keeping them busy, or something like that.
But enough about them. Let’s talk about why you’re really here—it’s this jam they make. Last year, I had the honor of playing around with their Peach Chamomile preserve which I stuffed between two pieces of challah and made into french toast. This year, they sent me a variety pack of their best jams: Fig and Black Tea, Pear with Honey and Ginger, Raspberry Rose, and Apples and Cranberry. Having recently come off my Thanksgiving high, I thought it would be best to play with the Apples and Cranberry jam.
The rule of working with Quince & Apple’s products is to do as little to them as humanly possible. You can, without any shame, just eat the jam straight out of the jars and be perfectly happy. You can add it to a charcuterie plate with cheese and crackers. You can spread it on toast. I decided to go the dessert route—pulling together a shortbread dough which I free-formed into a tart, topped with jam, cheese, and nuts and baked until it was golden brown.
The combination I chose was Apple and Cranberry jam, gruyere cheese, and almonds, but you can mix and match the jam, cheese, and nuts based on what you’re feeling. For example, you can take the Fig and Black Tea jam and top it with goat cheese and hazelnuts. Or the Pear with Honey and Ginger would go nicely with cheddar and walnuts. You get the idea.
This tart isn’t fussy—other than the chilling of the dough for an hour, you’ll only spend about 15 minutes pulling it together. And being that the dough is free-form, you can make it any shape you like.
Now, if you’ve got holiday gifts on the brain, I recommend checking out Quince & Apple’s Holiday Gift Boxes. Mix and match the preserves with crackers, sausages, or syrups (which are all fantastic as well). Crossing my fingers I get one of these this year.
- ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 jar (6 ounces or ¾ of a cup) Quince and Apple's Apple and Cranberry Jam
- ¼ cup gruyere, shredded
- ¼ cup slivered almonds
- Using an electric mixture, beat together butter, sugar, vanilla, and salt for about 2-4 minutes, until mixture becomes smooth. Turn speed to low, then add flour, a little bit at a time, scraping down the sides as needed, until a dough just starts to form.
- Use your hands to knead the dough into a ball, then wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 425F.
- Remove dough from fridge and place on parchment paper. Sprinkle a little flour on top and gently roll out to a circle or oval (shape doesn't matter) that is about ½ inch thick with a 12 inche diameter. Using your fingers, pinch together sides to make a 1 inch wall around the outside. Prick center with a fork all around, then bake for 8-10 minutes, until it's just starting to brown.
- Remove from oven and scoop jam into center, spreading it around with a spoon to the wall edges. Sprinkle gruyere on top, followed by the almonds. Bake for an additional 5-10 minutes until dough is golden brown and cheese is melted. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.
- Other possible combinations: Fig and Black Tea jam with goat cheese and hazelnuts, Pear with Honey and Ginger jam with cheddar and walnuts.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. I was compensated to create recipes for Quince & Apple. As always, I only work with products I use myself and all opinions are my own. Thanks for continuing to support Things I Made Today!