I love the change of the season, and the changes in the food I am eating. It is time to dig out the casserole dishes and the slow cooker, harvest the autumn pumpkins and squashes, and forage for sloes.
Cheaper cuts of meat respond wonderfully well to long slow cooking, even tough meat becomes meltingly tender. Some of my favourite casseroles are:-
- Ox Cheeks with red wine and pickled walnuts
- Mustardy chicken thigh and potato one pot
- My simple, but perfect beef slow cooker casserole
The colours of autumn pumpkins and squash reflect the lovely yellow and orange leaves, making them feel more seasonal. I use squash all the year round, but eat lots more of it in the autumn. Favourites are
- Butternut Squash Gnocchi
- Pumpkin and Cranberry Smoothie
- and a spiced pumpkin and cranberry cupcake for Thanksgiving
They say you should wait until after the first frost to harvest your sloes, which brings the worry that others will be less patient than you. As well as gin, I make a sloe syrup as a base for cocktails and ice cream, for the last few years we have spent the first week of November in the Cotswolds where we have found a plentiful supply of sloes.
What are your favourite autumn ingredients?
I have been compensated by Forest Holidays for writing this post, all opinions are my own.