A Cook's Plot

Puddings & Desserts


Membrillo goes well with my recipe Quince Tartlets with Membrillo.


  • 1.5kg quinces
  • 2 strips lemon rind
  • juice of half a lemon
  • granulated sugar


Get rid of any fluff from the quinces by running them under the tap, then slice them up (don't worry about coring them as you'll be sieving the fruit later). Put in a large pan with just enough water to cover them, and the lemon rind and juice. Bring to the boil then turn down the heat and simmer, covered, until the fruit is soft - about 15-20 mins. At this point, the fruit will be pale yellow so it's hard to imagine it will end up the rich red colour of membrillo - but it will!

Push the fruit through a sieve with the back of a wooden spoon (or, better still, put it through a mouli food mill if you have one). Spoon the fruit into a jug so you can measure it, then put it back in the pan with 400g sugar for every 500ml fruit.

Slowly bring to the boil, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. And now for the slow bit - it needs to simmer for two or three hours until it gets to the point when you can draw a spoon along the base of the pan and it just leaves a clear channel for a few seconds. Stir it regularly during this time so it doesn't burn at the bottom of the pan.

Tip it into a shallow tin lined with baking parchment paper and leave for 24 hours in a cool but not cold place (ie, not the fridge). Cut into squares and then store in the fridge in an airtight tin - it will keep for months.

A Cook's Plot Tip

My neighbour, Marylin, has recently stirred some of my membrillo into gravy to serve with roast pork and says it was really good, so I will be trying that myself tonight!

Also, to make a loose-set Quince Jam, after about an hour of cooking remove from the heat and spoon into sterilised jars. Keep in the fridge rather then in a cupboard, as this soft-set jam won't store as well as normal jam - but it tastes so good, it probably won't be hanging around for long anyway!

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