Membrillo is a a sort of solid quince jam eaten with Manchego cheese.
It’s used prolifically throughout the middle east, and also in Spain.
You can buy membrillo in the UK now quite easily (Waitrose sell it) but if you want to have a go at making it the best recipe is Claudia Roden’s – published in her book, The Food of Spain. It is useful for adding an intrguing flavour to a whole range of food, both savoury and sweet.
You can use membrillo:
- to flavour the gravy for duck
- with filo pastry and goats’ cheese
- dissolved in the dressing for a pear, stilton and walnut salad
- to eat as they do in Spain with Manchego cheese (or with UK made Manchego style cheese)
- or as Spanish chef Omar Allibhoy suggests – similar sort of idea – add membrillo to cheesecakes
- to add (as the Romans did) to caramelised leeks
- or in a cheese and leek quiche
- in an apple, chicory and fennel gratin
- to a tarte Tatin
- to a lamb tagine
- in José Pizarro’s Andalusia there is a wonderful recipe for a beetroot, orange, pomegranate and goats’ cheese salad with a membrillo dressing comprised of 115g of membrillo, 5 tbsps olive oil, and 2 tbsps of sherry vinegar.