Thursday, November 19, 2009

Smell of fall

Quinces are to me what madleines are to Proust - doors to times long gone. Fall is not really here, in spite of the barren trees and the frosted ground, until I find quinces.But now it is time to stop being in denial as I have found them!

Grandma had a quince tree in the backyard ans every fall, she picked up the fruit and brought it inside. It filled the whole house with its ripen smell. The quinces lined up in a sunny spot on the windowsill or next to the wood burning stove like soldiers at the parade. Then grandma turned them into my absolute favorite: jam. Quince jam and plum jam were a must in winter. I liked them spread on tea biscuits. Bread was good too, but only as a last resort. All this is gone now, the house, the tree, the jam. The only thing left is the smell of ripen quince to usher in the fall.