Quince & Medlars

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Late Autumn - quince and medlars are at their very best right now!


Quince will make your kitchen (or any room) smell just heavenly - they are the most naturally fragrant fruit grown in Britain. They are similar to a pear or an apple, though you do have to peel & cook them - but they are beautiful poached, or worked in crumbles, and they go very well with game - eg with pheasant.


Medlars are lesser known - they are primarily unusual in that you need to let them become really ripe / soft before using them. They even have their very own verb to describe this softening - "bletting" - as in "medlars need to blett" - see here the contrast between a raw / hard medlar and the fully bletted ones.






Medlars can be eaten uncooked - you just cut them in half and scoop out the flesh - they go really well with a nice russet apple, some walnuts, or blue cheese and a glass of wine.


Equally you you strain the bletted fruit and turn it into a medlar tart - you could even try this recipe from the 1660s - very to the point!


Most popular nowadays is to make Medlar Jelly, which goes really well with roasts or cheeseboards - make a batch of it, and using these nice new jam jars, they make for a really nice seasonal gift.