Autumn is well upon us and I’m frantically using up the last of the tomatoes, including them in all the meals plus eating them raw all the time. Tomato butter is one of the best tomatoey inventions; admittedly, it has the taste but it doesn’t have the look. And if you can spread it on homemade sourdough, like the seeded sourdough batons for instance, you’re on to a double winner. Though I have to slow down with making everything at home or people will start wondering why we don’t butcher our own cows. I’ve been asked already if I made butter (plain, not tomato) at home so clearly I come across all Good Life and so on.
For the record, I don’t make my own butter. Yet. I make yoghurt and it’s a massively rewarding undertaking: I’ve never tasted any shop-bought dairy as good as my yoghurt made from raw milk, optional but improves the taste. Milk (as whole as you can get if pasteurised) is heated up gently to 90C, cooled down to about body temperature and then you whisk in a couple of tablespoons of any plain live yoghurt. Keep the pan warm for 12 hours then cold for another 12 and the best, tangiest, creamiest yoghurt is yours for a week of breakfasts. The only other thing you need to make is a batch of granola.
I’ve seen apricots in the market so a few jars of apricot jam are still achievable. Other than that, apples are on the menu. Apple pie and apple strudel are the traditional productions but how about a cider and apple bread with chunks of apple? Or bacon and apple muffins? They look pretty and taste very interesting.
From breakfast we’re moving on to lunch and dinner: wild duck, if you can get one, is a gorgeous game bird. Served with fondant carrots for example. Pork cooked in unusually interesting way is Haitian pork griot, braised then fried pork shoulder with spices. You could braise a batch for your meal plan and sear portions for weekly suppers. Green salad with it will be obligatoire.
For those still finding courgettes on your garden plants, here’s a recipe for sautéed courgettes with magic breadcrumbs. It could be a vegetarian main if served over plain pasta – and pay special attention to the breadcrumbs, that’s the detail to remember. And if you’re blessed with access to affordable (or pickable) quantities of wild mushrooms, serve those sautéed over that pasta, don’t bother with courgettes. Or even breadcrumbs.
Bake something with apples. Go mushroom picking. And subscribe to the newsletter – there will be interesting new recipes coming up next week, as ever.