Go head over heels for my collection of irresistible recipes for autumn. Substantial salads, soothing soups, nourishing casseroles and comforting puddings, holiday treats and seasonal preserves – find everything you need for fall right here.
As the evenings start to draw in, the way we cook and eat starts to shift. The season of mists and mild fruitfulness brings with it one of the most bountiful times of year.
Late summer berries, orchard fruits and later stone fruits like plums and damson need to be harvested before they fall from the trees, and winter squash are just coming into season.
While some will keep right through the winter months if stored correctly, others have a brief window. They must be enjoyed right away or processed and preserved to be savoured later.
The transition towards cool weather habits starts with more substantial salads and more root vegetables and squash. The joy of fresh and fragrant apples and pears, the sudden appearance of earthy wild mushrooms and then the ripening of nuts.
As the leaves start to fall and days grow cooler, more filling recipes call to us again. Robust stews and filling puddings are warming and welcome rather than stodgy and overwhelming. Comfort food and slow cooking come to the fore.
Harvest festivals give way to Halloween, to Guy Fawkes’ Night in the UK, Thanksgiving in North America and St Andrew’s Day, as Advent comes into view and winter begins.
Here are some of my favourite recipes for autumn.
These fuss free recipes are perfect for entertaining. There’s no fiddly arranging of art-on-a-plate. Just the sort of food that your guests will love and plenty of time for you to spend time with your friends.
Soups can also fall into this category, so don’t forget to look at those too.
Autumn is when soups really come into their own. All those delicious roots and winter squash are perfect for soup making, and while not everyone is keen on summer soups, surely we all love a bowl of something rich and comforting for lunch or supper when we start to feel a nip in the air?
Soup has the great advantage of making you feel satisfied for longer, so if you are trying to lose a few pounds, it is always a good choice for a light meal.
All of these autumn recipes are easy to make and most are entirely plant based. Dress them up with a stylish garnish and they make a great starter when you’re entertaining too.
At this time of year, we’re all still active but with cooler weather, dinner sometimes needs to be more sustaining.
From robust salads that make good use of grains and autumn vegetables to filling one-pot dishes and dinner party feasts, explore these warming meals that make the most of the season.
Fall for these autumn recipes with these vegetarian and vegan options, with plenty of flavour to suit everyone – even the meat enthusiasts!
Warming stews and casseroles come to the fore as the evenings draw in and richer meat dishes suit cooler weather.
More cheese, please!
Rich and filling cheese dishes for cooler days.
It’s time to get back to your roots! Everything that grows under the ground is ready to go at this time of year, but it’s also time for all kinds of winter squash and anything that you can mash or roast.
Now is the time to enjoy orchard fruits at their best, in crumbles and pies and so much more. Steamed puddings are comforting and filling and sorbets made with apple and blackberry are stunning.
Toffee is also a fall flavour for me, inextricably linked with Bonfire Night on 5th November.
And don’t forget that Christmas puddings need to be made well in advance, so get cooking on or before Stir Up Sunday, the last Sunday before the start of Advent when the traditional plum duff was prepared!
Apples, vine fruits and sweet spices bring a distinctive flavour to your baking in leaf fall season. Try adding sweet root vegetables to a comforting loaf, or experiment with my bacon and sausage buns for a hearty supper – great for outdoor gatherings in cooler weather.
Drinks for now, drinks for later
Autumn fruit smoothies make energizing breakfasts on the move, while the slow process of infusing hedgerow liqueurs needs to be timed to make the most of the wild harvest.
Early fall is peak preserving time, so whether you are an old hand at jellies and chutneys or taking your first steps into jam making, now is a great time to get busy with these recipes.
The bounty of the wild hedgerow comes free of charge, so head out to find blackberries, crab apples, wild plums and damsons, autumn raspberries and more.