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Have not taste it before-thanks for sharing.

Josh Tuck

Posts like this are why I keep coming back. I can't believe the amazing things you two learn traveling the globe! I can't wait to get out there again and do some more exploring.

David Houtz

We have had a medlar for years and never been able to appreciate the flavor. That flavor being, I imagine, very much like putty. With no sweetness whatsoever. I am still looking for a palatable use of the medlar fruit.


How does Turks use the medlar jelly? Do they use it on sweet pastry mainly – pancake etc? Nigel Slater introduced a few alternative Roast before Xmas and this is his roast pheasant with medlar jelly. I guess it can easily be replaced with apple and pear jelly/sauce, by the sound of your description, if one can’t find medlar.

In Shakespeare’s birthplace garden (Stratford-upon-Avon), there are a good varieties of old (and sometimes rare) fruit trees – and there is a medlar tree which sometimes actors do their play around. I do remember seeing quince tree, that was years ago. I wouldn’t have remembered medlar because I didn’t know it then.

I don’t think medlar fruits were thought ‘unattractive’ ,not in Romeo and Juliet I mean-- as maids ‘laugh alone’ , they laugh to each other because the fruits were ‘sexy’.

Can’t believe I am seeing ‘a pop-her-in pear’ on a family site – assuming you know its 16th century euphemism. :=D

Lisa in Toronto

Are medlars the same as the Italian nespole? They are also eaten super-ripe. When we had an Italian greengrocer on my corner they would offer them every year. I tried one once, and it did not click.
Maybe in the right circumstances I can try it again sometime.


Lisa - no, nespole are loquats I think.
Didn't know they have them in Italy (though we saw them in Turkey last summer) ... they're a big deal here in Malaysia.

Katy - Turks make jam and compote from medlars. The jelly is a British/European thing, I think. (Turks don't eat jelly with their meats!)

Josh - thanks. If we're inspiring you to get back out there, so much the better! Nothing like discovering new foods on the road.

You're welcome, foodbin.


Wow, it is the first time I see this fruit. Would like to try it.

I tried the loquats in Thailand. Also tried the mangosteens. Loved the flavor


They have them in Italy and they are called nespole but also loquat are called nespole....
Esistono due differenti frutti che vengono indicati con il nome di nespola: il frutto di Eriobotrya japonica (nespolo giapponese) appunto che è quello ad oggi maggiormente commercializzato e conosciuto e il frutto del nespolo comune. The Japonica is the loquat the commune is the medlar. It was the Romans who planted them all over the mediterranean. Here in Umbria not many people use them. In Holland we call them mispels and the funny thing is that loquats are sometimes also called mispels sometimes, same as in Italy! We also have the proverb 'rot als een mispel' rotten as a mispel.

Culinary School Guide

I adore apple butter so your description of this otherwise gross-looking fruit has made me want one. Thanks!


Wow, this looks extremely unusual! I'm hoping to move to Turkey in a couple of months, so I look forward to sampling this oddity. Apple butter and lemon? Sounds simply exotic! Thanks for sharing :)

Nergis Yazgan

Great and fun article. Thank you . Never thought our good ole medlar made it to Shakespeare in rather, er, daring descriptive wording
Nergis Yazgan , Istanbul

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