Much as I love spending sunny days in a summer dress and sandals, I’m always happy when the weather starts to cool in September. We’re in that in-between stage when shirt sleeves are not quite warm enough outside at the start of the day and I’m almost ready to search out my winter jerseys. I have visions of dressing in autumn colours with warm tights and tan coloured leather boots while I sit eating cheese and apple washed down with Beth’s Blackberry Gin (though the reality is rather different).
Food changes too. Deep, inky coloured blackberries and purple beetroot dominate the kitchen. Breakfast in a jar for a son who leaves for work at 3 in the morning. Oats and grated apple soaked in apple juice sit beneath a layer of yoghurt mixed with blackberry puree, topped with fresh blackberries and raspberries.
Warm roasted beetroot with feta cheese and a drizzle of raspberry vinegar served with green soda bread inspired by a tweet from @TheShadyBaker “Roasting beetroot & making green bread with the leaves, thanks for the recipe @foxslane. Yay!! Sounds like a delicious day.” I didn’t follow the recipe for the green bread, partly because I tend to read a recipe on the computer and then go to the kitchen, with frequent visits back to the screen to check what I’m doing (I’m far too tight to print off a recipe unless I know that it works) and this time I thought I’d just use my usual soda bread recipe and add the beetroot leaves, parsley, chard and spring onions. Don’t you find that sometimes you just need to see a picture or read something to spark off your own ideas rather than following a recipe?
Where do you get your inspiration? I don’t do meal plans and when I’m shopping I tend to buy what looks good rather than go with a full itemised list, so whatever’s growing in the garden or lurking in the fridge are usually my starting point. I have a few well thumbed recipe books and recipes torn from magazines and newspapers that are filed in a ring binder and increasingly I try out recipes from other bloggers. I think there’s something rather good about reading a post or tweet from someone the other side of the world and half an hour later putting the same thing on the table. Incidentally, do you read people’s blogs and follow them on Twitter? And Facebook? And follow their boards on Pinterest? I worry that doing too much might seem like stalking!