What is Quince?
Quince is basically a fragrant fruit belonging to the Rosaceae family, which also includes apples and pears. It is native to the warm temperate regions of Southwest Asia. Quince is a seasonal fruit and is available from autumn to winter. When ripe, this fruit is golden yellow in color and resembles a pear in shape. It has a fuzzy surface that is similar to that of peaches and a light yellow, gritty flesh with multiple seeds in the center. It has a tart flavor and is seldom eaten raw. It is often baked or frozen to eliminate its acidity. In fact, it is used in traditional recipes in the Middle East and Mediterranean regions where it is stewed with lamb, goat and pork. The Asian quince variety, being softer and juicier, is often used to make preserves and jellies. Sometimes, it is also used to impart tartness to the traditional apple pie.
Health Benefits of Quince
Anticancer Properties: The antioxidant properties of quince help the body fight against free radicals and destroy malignant cancer cells. The granules in the pulp of quince fruit contain astringent compounds known as tannins i.e. catechin and epicatechin. These tannins protect your mucous membranes from cancers by binding to cancer-causing toxins and chemicals in the colon.
Lowers Cholesterol Levels: Regular consumption of quince fruit helps to lower LDL or bad cholesterol in the blood, keeping the heart healthy.
Relieves Stress: The various antioxidants in quince help in relieving stress and maintaining a calm mind.
Circulation and Hair Health: When red blood cell production is high, then circulation around the body increases, which means oxygen, is carried throughout the body. This causes increased blood flow to the skin and scalp, which can increase hair follicle health and stimulate growth.
Treats Nausea And Vomiting: Boiled or baked quince relieves nausea and vomiting. Being a good diuretic, it helps to remove fluid build up.
Uses of Quince
Fruit it is used in mixed products including juices pure and mixed, liqueurs, wine, cider, fruits in liqueur, jam, marmalade, jelly, and dried jelly as a special “quince-bread” due to its strong and intensive fragrance and flavor.
Quinces are used for flavoring apple pies, ices and confections.
Quince scalding water, rich in phenolic compounds, flavonoids, organic acids and sugars could be used in low-fat yogurt production.
Quince juice mixes well with other fruit juices.
Quince wine was popular in Britain in the nineteenth century, and was reputed to be beneficial to asthma sufferers.
Quince is made into brandy in Bosnia.
Nutritional value of Quince
Quince consists of good amount of mineral content like iron, copper, and zinc. These three minerals, together with other trace elements, are essential for the production of red blood cells.