English Name: Quince
Botanical Name: Cydonia oblonga
DESCRIPTION: Quince is a hard yellowish fruit related to apples and oranges, but unlike it’s relatives quinces are hard to eat raw and taste pretty poor too.
They need to be “bletted” (softened by frost and then a little decay) before eaten. But the scent set it apart from other fruits.
ORIGIN: It is believed that the quince long preceded the apple, and that many ancient references were made of apples, in fact, references to quinces, as the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. Greek mythology associates the quince with Aphrodite, the goddess of Love, and many believe that the golden apple the name given to her by Paris was later named the quince. It is said to have originated from western Asia but are now grown worldwide especially in Uruguay.
Ancient Greeks associated the quince with fertility, and it played an important role in wedding celebrations where it was offered as a gift, used to sweeten the bride’s breath before entering the bridal chamber and shared by the bride and groom. These association have resulted in some regarding it as the forbidden fruit that was eaten and the quince becoming known as the “fruit of love, marriage and fertility”.
Etymologically, quince is linked to Kudonia. A portion of the northwest coast of Crete from which quince were exported and the botanical name was derived as Cydonia. The ordinary quince of old hoas transformed into the fruit as we know it today in the Mediterranean area.
NATURAL BENEFITS: Quince is rich in dietary fiber, A boosts of antioxidant properties that helps fight against diseases, quince has been found to be beneficial for people suffering from gastric ulcer. It also aids digestion and lowers cholesterol.
USES: Quince are eaten but cooked before eating, quince is used to make marmalade, spoon, sweets, jam and jellies etc. Eaten when cooked with lamb, turkey and duck etc.