If you’re a true turophile, you're likely familiar with Quince Paste, and have likely enjoyed it alongside an assortment of quality cheeses. If Quince Paste is unfamiliar to your palate, now is an excellent time to add it to your "must-try" foods list for 2014.
Quince trees date back thousands of years, and their fruit has long been considered a symbol of love and commitment. The fruit tastes like a cross between an apple and a pear, though because of its dry texture and high pectin content, it is most commonly used in cooked preparations like preserves and Quince Paste. A supplier in New Zealand, where Quince Paste is a tremendously popular companion to cheese, makes Trader Joe's Quince Paste exclusively for us, by hand, in small batches. It's a sliceable, semi-firm paste that pairs well with all kinds of cheeses, and adds a bit of true turophilia to a cheese plate. We especially like it with our Cave Aged Blue Cheese.
Because Quince Paste is considered a "specialty" food, many markets mark it up to a terribly high price. We don't work that way at Trader Joe's. We're selling Trader Joe's Quince Paste in a 4.2 ounce tub for $2.99, every day. You'll find it in our cheese case, of course.