Quince/Guava Paste for Cheese
- mamaciita Nov 12, 2008 02:39 PM
What's the best source for quince or guava paste? Is one better for pairing with cheese?
I have access to Mexican and Asian supermarkets, Whole Foods-type groceries, wholesalers, etc.
Hi there... the Whole Foods here in DC has a Spanish quince paste which is wonderful for spanish cheeses. Although it is called a paste, the one I have is more like a solid jam inside a small plastic box. It's especially yummy inside crepes! I have also seen guava paste in asian stores, though mostly larger ones.
Most Mexican markets carry quince paste; it's usually labeled "ate de membrillo." It is much, much less expensive than the Spanish brands at a gourmet store. Quince paste and manchego cheese (NOT the Mexican style this time) are classic; quince paste also pairs well w/other similiar cheeses.
They will also have guava paste ("ate de guayaba") at the Mexican market. It is often paired with soft, white, fresh-style cheeses in South America. I've had some amazing empanadas w/this combination, and I've seen a guava/fresh cheese "pizza" on television.
I've seen Quince at Whole Foods in the Cheese Dept. also at every specialty cheese shop whenever I've looked for it. It is a traditional and delicious Spanish condiment for cheese, especially Manchego Roncal, Mahón and Campo de Montalban. It also works well any salty or blue cheese - Valdeón for example.
Guava works well with dry and salty cheeses like Parmigiano-Reggiano, Pecorino or aged Gouda - though I've not noticed Guava jam anywhere lately. I love guava thumbprints made with gauva paste. Cookies and cheese!