In the first of our collaborations with the Lost Garden of Heligan, we share Head Chef, Guy Owen’s Medlar Jelly Recipe. Totally simple and totally delicious.
750g Medlars (It is important to note that the medlars should be well ‘bletted’ before use)
1 small granny smith apple
½ lemon juice and zest
1 lime zest
1 small shot of sherry (25ml)
280g jam sugar/castor sugar
Wash the outside of the medlar, then cut them into quarters and place into a medium sized pan. Literally cut them in quarters and put them in, no need to skin them or anything.
Add sherry, lemon, lime, apple (skin and core as well). Then cover with enough water so the medlar just start to float, but only just.
Put them onto a high heat and bring to the boil. Once they start to boil, reduce to a gentle simmer and leave to cook for around 1 hour.
In a colander, lay some cheese cloth down so it covers the whole colander, place it over a deep bowl, and pour all of the contents into it. It is very important at this point that you just leave it all alone. Do not try and push the fruit to extract all of the juices as you will end up with a cloudy jelly, and you don’t want that.
Leave everything in the fridge to strain off overnight.
The following morning take the strained liquid. You should have around 500ml of liquid.
Place liquid and sugar into a pan and bring to the boil. Take a sugar thermometer and heat the liquid until it reaches 104 degree Celsius. To double check to make sure the jelly is at the right temperature, take a very cold plate (maybe put it in the freezer or fridge for a few minutes), pour a little spoon of jelly on the plate, allow to cool and if it is ‘set’, or ripples when you touch it, it is ready.
Following that it is a simple case of transferring to clean jam jars for storage. Keep in the fridge for up to 10 months.
At The Idle Rocks, our diversity with this amazing, very under used product is endless. This year we will be introducing dandelion to the jelly. We will take the yellow flowers, pick the individual petals and add them to the hot jelly mixture and then leaving them to set in the jelly, which not only offers great colour, but also a little tiny peppery kick.
The best use for medlar jelly is with cheese or as part of a ploughman’s lunch.
Read more about Medlar: The Forgotten Fruit