Rachel Lambert: forager, author, guide

Raw Medlar Tart (vegan, sugar-free, grain-free)

Oooh, the caramel and slightly tart flavour of raw, bletted medlars was the inspiration for this raw, vegan and sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free tart. The only sugars present in it are from the ripe, slightly fermented medlar fruits and the dates in the base.

This Raw Medlar tart is easy to make and is perfect if you have a really restricted diet or really young children and are avoiding sugar and processed foods.

A medlar ready to 'blet'

If medlars are a new fruit to you, check out my blog on How to use Medlars, which includes information on 'bletting' and how to process and ripen these amazing fruits.

Medlars have a natural nutrition of carbohydrate, iron, calcium, B1, fibre and ascorbic acid. I find them delicious and definitely a fruit worth discovering.

Raw Medlar Tart recipe

A 'free-from' tart inspired by the flavour of medlars - reminiscent of apple sauce, quince or apricot puree. This is easy to make and a skinny, light, unadulterated tart.

Makes 1 tart (12 slices)

  • 100g ground nuts
  • 100g chopped dates
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 180g medlar puree (from 360g bletted medlars)
  • 400ml can of coconut milk, refrigerated overnight (with no preservatives and suitable for whipping)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

First make the tart base. Lightly grease a 20cm tart tin with coconut oil. Combine the oil, dates and ground almonds in a food processor until a loose dough forms. Alternatively, warm the coconut oil in a small saucepan, stir in the dates and put aside for 10 minutes. Add the ground almonds and using your hands (I find this gets better results than a wooden spoon) combine the mixture until the dates have broken down and you have a sticky dough. Press the mixture into the tin, smoothing down the surface with the back of a wooden spoon.

Next add the medlar puree and spread evenly over the surface. At this stage you can refrigerate overnight. This will also firm up the topping and make it easier to remove from the tin.

Open the can of coconut milk and spoon out the solid coconut cream only, put the coconut water aside (this can be used in drinks or curries). Add the vanilla extract and a teaspoon of the coconut water. Whip with an electric or hand whisk until creamy. Add a little coconut water, if too thick. Lather over the top of the tart and use a sieve or tea strainer to lightly dust the top with cinnamon. Best eaten at room temperature (to let the flavours come through). Eaten within a couple of days.

Slices of raw medlar tart for a foraging course

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