I am helping to organize my building’s holiday party next week and am in charge of sweets and beer. The two most important elements of any party in my book. Since this will be the first time meeting most of my neighbors I want to make a good first impression, win them over with lots of buttery goodness but you know not make it seem too obvious or like I had tested the recipe 3 times. More like oh! these silly things i just threw together from my run to the farmers market this morning.
I have to say that these are the best thing i’ve made in a while – just plain scrumptious and dang they were easy to make. I even went all fancy and made my own jam which is not necessary but the cranberry quince and rosemary flavor combo was pretty epic…if I do say so myself. If you go with a store bought jam, I would suggest something on the less sweet, more tart and flavor packed side (a sour cherry perhaps or something in the marmalade family). But if you are feeling jammy i have included the recipe for the Cranberry Quince Jam – and by recipe I mean list of things you put in a pot and stir once or twice.
- 12oz / 3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temp
- ½ cup / 100g granulated sugar
- ½ cup / 100g dark brown sugar
- 3 cups / 360g all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 1-2 cups jam*
- 1 cup / 80g sliced almonds
- Preheat the oven to 350˚F and line a 9x13 casserole dish with parchment, leaving some overhang on the side for easy removal.
- Place the butter and sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until the mixture is very light in color, about 3 to 4 minutes. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix on low just until combined - its ok for it to look crumbly but it should hold together when pinched.
- Separate out about ⅓ of the mixture and put into the freezer while you press the rest of the dough into your prepared pan. If the dough is sticky, chill it in the fridge for 10 minutes or use another piece of parchment to press it out.
- Spread the jam in a thin even layer over the dough, leaving a ½ inch border at the edge.
- Remove the dough from the freezer and crumble it over the jam along with the almonds.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the top is golden brown. Cool completely before slicing into squares.
- Store at room temp, wrapped in plastic wrap, for 3-4 days.
This can be made up to 1 month in advance - following steps through assembly, wrapping it in plastic and placed in the freezer. Bake time should be about the same straight from the freezer.
- 1 lb fresh cranberries, rinsed
- 3-4 quince, peeled and cut into small pieces
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2-3 sprigs rosemary
- juice and zest of 1 lemon
- Combine all of the ingredients in a pot along with ½ cup of water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until thickened, about 1 hour.
- Remove the rosemary sprigs.
- Store in the fridge for a few weeks.