Lily Vanilli's Quince Tart with Star Anise Recipe

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Lily Vanilli quince tart photo
Preparation Time50 mins
Cooking Time1 hours 30 mins
Total Time2 hours 20 mins

This heavenly tart makes the perfect posh pud to impress friends with.



For the sweet shortcrust pastry

  • 250g wholegrain spelt flour
  • 100g icing sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 150g unsalted butter, cubed or grated and refrigerated
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 egg
  • Optional flavourings: zest of 1 orange, lemon or grapefruit, finely grated, or 1tsp freshly grated nutmeg, or 15g ground almonds

For the tart filling

  • 1 litre water
  • 4 large quinces (about 300g each) peeled, cored and quartered
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 1 orange, sliced
  • 220g light brown sugar
  • ½ vanilla pod, split lengthways
  • 5 or 6 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick

You will need

One 23cm round tart tin


  1. Chill the mixing bowl of a food processor and correct pastry attachment in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  2. Sift the flour, icing sugar and salt into a large bowl, add the butter, then cover with a plate and transfer to the freezer for 10 minutes.
  3. Transfer to your food processor or stand mixer and combine in quick pules to just bring it to the breadcrumbs stage.
  4. Combine the eggs and your flavouring using and add gradually to the mixture until it comes together as a dough.
  5. Refrigerate overnight if possible, or for a minimum of an hour. Take the dough out of the fridge an hour before you need to roll it.
  6. To make the tart put the water into a heavy-bottomed pan and set it on the stove. Add the quinces, lemon and orange slices, sugar and spices and turn the heat to medium. Stir to dissolve the sugar, then cover and leave to simmer in the syrup, stirring occasionally, until the quinces are cooked through but still firm (you can test for doneness with a fork) - depending on their ripeness and how thick the slices are they make take anything from 40 minutes to 1 hour. Make sure you check them from time to time. When they are done, drain and reserve the poaching liquid.
  7. Preheat the oven to 180C (fan assisted), gas mark 6.
  8. Make the glaze. Put the lemon zest and juice, the honey, the strained poaching liquid and star anise into a separate pan and reduce over a high heat for 10-15 minutes, until slightly thickened and starting to brown. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  9. Roll out the pastry to 5mm thick, place in your prepared tart tin and refrigerate for around 30 minutes. Line, weigh down with baking beads and blind bake on a baking tray for 15 minutes. Remove the beans, prick the base with a fork and bake for a further 10 minutes, or until browning and starting to crisp. Brush the pastry with a thin layer of glaze and return to the oven for 2 minutes. Remove and allow to cool.
  10. Drain the cooled quine quarters, slice each one into four, and assemble the slices however you like in the baked tart case. Pour the remaining glaze over the top, and return to the oven for 15 minutes. Remove and place on a wire rack to cool completely. Taken from Lily Vanilli, Sweet Tooth: Recipes and Tips from a Modern Artisan Bakery (£20; Cannongate)