Harvest Moon

1st September 2016 In Season

This month Roger takes a look at one of his most favourite seasons.

With summer nearly over for another year, there’s still plenty to look forward to as we slip into early autumn. As we enjoy this lovely time of year in between summer and autumn and say goodbye to the last of the summer berries and salad crops, it’s time to look forward to a beautiful new season that is packed with flavour and choice.

And my word, Autumn certainly doesn’t disappoint on the food front, just take a look at the wonderful ingredients that are at their most plentiful and best during September. There is an absolute abundance of wonderful British produce to look forward to and the autumn harvest is complemented beautifully with the delicious game, fish and meat that are right in season too.

September is best for…
Aubergines, Beetroot, Broccoli, Chard, Cob nuts, Courgettes, Cucumber, Runner Beans, Spinach, Peppers, Apples, Blackberries, Damsons, Greengages, Kale, Loganberries, Plums, Cox’s Apples, Pears, Mallard Duck, Lemon Sole, Dover Sole, Grouse, Guinea Fowl, Parsnips, Venison, Wild Mushrooms, Duck, Butternut squash, Clams, Chestnuts, Wood Pigeon, partridge, Brown Trout, Cod, Grey Mullet, Haddock, Halibut, Herring, John Dory, Plaice, Salmon, Scallops, Sea Bass, Squid, Turbot, Crab and Rabbit.

Much as we all love Summer, I must confess that as a self-confessed foodie, I think that Autumn is probably one of the most exciting times of year in the kitchen. This is the season that is simply overflowing with ripe apples, juicy pears, plums, blackberries and damsons, crinkly kale, gorgeous game and fabulous fish to name but a few.

Interestingly if we take a look at the literal definition of Harvest meaning ‘The amount of crops that are gathered; the amount of a natural product gathered in a single season’ this also defines exactly what it is that we stand for here are Seasons so we thought we would take a closer look at the origins of the word and what it means in Britain.

A harvest festival is an annual celebration that takes place around the time of the main harvest of a  region or country. Given the differences in climate and produce around the world, harvest festivals can be found at various times of the year in different countries, featuring foods that come to maturity around the time of the festival. In Britain, thanks have been given for successful harvests since pagan times. Harvest festival is traditionally held on the Sunday near or of the Harvest Moon. This is the full Moon that occurs closest to the Autumn equinox (the 22nd or 23rd September). The celebrations on this day usually include singing hymns and decorating churches with baskets of fruit and food in celebrations known as a Harvest Festival or a Harvest Thanksgiving.

We are sure that you will agree, September is a time when we should all be thankful for the wonderful British produce that we are lucky enough to gather, cook and enjoy each autumn.

How can we feel sad about the summer gone when there are so many delicious foods to make the most of – and with the weather taking a turn for the better, it’s not time for winter stews and woolly jumpers just yet!

I suppose the clue is in our name but Bea and I really do love our changing Seasons!