Take the humble cobbler up a notch: Slices of quince are cooked in a warm bath of maple and vanilla until tender and sweet, then baked under mounds of cornmeal-spiked biscuit dough. An opening in the center of the topping lets steam escape and reveals the bubbling, rosy-hued filling.
Technique tip: You can poach quince up to a week in advance, storing it in its liquid; the longer it marinates, the pinker it gets.
Swap options: To make maple whipped cream, substitute powdered sugar with 1/4 cup pure maple syrup.
For the filling:
In a large pot, bring 5 cups water, the maple syrup, granulated sugar, quinces and vanilla seeds and pod to a simmer over medium heat. Cover with a round of parchment, pressing it directly onto surface of quinces. Cook until quinces are soft and rosy pink, about 2 hours. Discard vanilla pod.
For the topping:1.
Preheat oven to 375 F.2.
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cornmeal, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt.3.
Cut in butter with a pastry blender or rub in with your fingers until mixture resembles coarse meal with some large pieces remaining. Make a well in the center. Pour in cream and stir until combined.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer quinces to a medium bowl. Add 1 cup poaching liquid and the cornstarch and toss to combine (reserve remaining poaching liquid for another use).2.
Pour quinces with juices into a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate. Arrange large spoonfuls of topping mixture around outer edge of pie plate, leaving a space in the center.3.
Sprinkle almonds over topping and bake until liquid is bubbling and topping is golden, about 50 minutes. Let cool completely.
For the whipped cream:
In a chilled medium bowl, whisk cream with an electric mixer on low speed until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes. Increase speed to medium-high, add powdered sugar and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 2 more minutes.
Using a fine-mesh sieve, dust with powdered sugar and serve with whipped cream.
Reprinted with permission from Martha Stewart's Fruit Desserts: 100+ Delicious Ways to Savor the Best of Every Season: A Baking Book. Copyright © 2021 by Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, LP. All rights reserved. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, an imprint of Penguin Random House.