This post is first of a new set of seasonal guides on Mostly Eating. Quarterly seems like a good timescale for a produce guide; long enough to hide those little uncertainties induced by geography and climate which can easily throw things out by a few weeks.
Here’s what you will find in here:
- a list of fruits and vegetables in season between late September to mid December (yep, I know, a little bit later than scheduled!). I’ve developed my list from a consensus opinion across a variety of sources including Eat the seasons, River Cottage and the Scottish What’s on your plate guide. It’s good for the UK and also for much of Northern Europe and the less sunny parts of the USA (for a State by State guide check out the Sustainable Table). For you antipodeans, Kathryn usually has a list for New South Wales (tell me if you know any sites with a wider coverage of Australia).
- I’ve put together a longish list of recipe and snack suggestions that center around using seasonal ingredients to make sure that your diet is full of fruits and vegetables.
- there’s a pretty PDF version of the list to stick on your fridge, or tuck into the front of your
favourite vegetable cookbook as a quick reminder of what to look out for when you go shopping. The Autumn cooking suggestions are on the back.
Autumn produce guide
Autumn is a feast riches for the seasonal eater, with the luxury of an extended overlap between the last of the summer favourites such as courgettes and aubergine and exciting newcomers like pumpkin, chestnuts and kale.
Seasonal fruits and vegetables for Autumn
apples, damsons, medlars, pears, quince, plums, chestnuts, elderberries, artichoke, aubergine, beetroot, broccoli, butternut squash, carrots, celery, courgette, fennel, garlic, kale, leeks, onions, potatoes, turnips, watercress, celeriac, kohlrabi, pumpkin, jerusalem artichoke, parsnips, chicory, beetroot, cauliflower
Meal and snack ideas for Autumn
Start your day with spiced porridge studded with fresh plums and dried figs
Snack on carrot and celery sticks with a canellini bean dip
Roast a batch of parsnips and make a chestnut, parsnip and orange soup
Add a little bit of butter and a grating of nutmeg to mashed cauliflower as a side dish or an alternative cottage pie topping
Roast parsnips in olive oil, honey and thyme
Saute leek and celery in olive oil. Add a couple of bay leaves, thyme and chunks of peeled and chopped potato and Jerusalem artichoke. Cover with vegetable stock, simmer and blend into a soup. Top with mixed seeds and freshly ground black pepper.
Bake plums in honey and cinnamon and serve with yogurt or crème fraiche
Cube butternut squash and roast in the oven. Add watercress, chickpeas, hazelnuts and feta for a delicious salad
Saute a little sliced garlic and chilli in olive oil, add thinly sliced kale and cook briefly for an easy side dish. Top with a poached egg for something more substantial
Griddle sliced tofu until crispy on the outside and serve in a wholegrain sandwich with harissa paste and slices of cooked pumpkin
Top fresh fish with julienne carrots, leeks and courgettes and sliced chilli and ginger. Bake or steam in a foil parcel with a splash or lime juice or white wine.
Stir-fry tofu, broccoli and chopped pecans with a chilli, soy and honey sauce and serve with brown rice
Make an autumnal oat thickie with cooked plums or damsons, apple juice, yogurt and honey
Grate a pear into hot porridge and top with chopped walnuts and maple syrup
Bake fennel in a close fitting roasting dish with red onion, garlic, sage and a splash of stock. Season well and blend the cooked vegetables with a dollop of natural yogurt to make a simple sauce for pasta. Top with roasted pine nuts and grated parmesan.
Save any leftover butternut squash to use in muffins and cake bites
Roast florets of cauliflower in cumin and olive oil. Toss the cooked florets with chickpeas, lemon juice and chopped green chilli for an easy lunchtime salad
Bake good quality sausages with sliced parsnips, apple and rosemary, drizzled with olive oil
Make a mezze plate with pears, walnuts and wensleydale cheese. Drizzle lightly with chestnut honey
Simmer quince in hot water with honey, lemon juice and bay leaf. Serve with a pork chop and a courgette pilaff
Concoct a hearty vegetable stew with kidney beans, canned tomatoes, celery, pumpkin and kale, seasoned with smoked paprika and dried oregano
Hope you enjoy the list! Apologies to my lovely Australian blog readers if you are feeling a bit left out. By the end of another year we’ll have a full set of seasonal guides and you can join in the fun.
I’m hoping to do a similar Winter guide which will be out late December/early January. If you don’t already subscribe to Mostly Eating but would like to hear about the Winter edition, look for the Subscribe for updates notice near the top of the page to subscribe for new posts by email or in your RSS reader.