Seasonal Food: What to Eat in October
Vibrant vegetablesThe thing about eating seasonally is you’re guaranteed fresher produce. The other thing about eating seasonally is you’ve got to work with what’s available. In the health food world, we talk a lot about kale. But what good is kale, if it was picked days ago and transported hundreds or thousands of miles before reaching your kitchen? In October, you’ll find an abundance of locally produced, fresh kale in the UK. It’s one of the few greens that is actually more vibrant and flavourful during the colder seasons. So if you’ve got that “Don’t Kale My Vibe” t-shirt, now’s the time to flaunt it. Talking of vibrancy, October is the perfect time of year to introduce deeply coloured beetroot into your weekly staples. If you don’t like beetroot, it’s probably only because you haven’t had it the right way yet. Juice it, steam it, roast it, grate it into yoghurt with some minced garlic and rich olive oil… The possibilities are endless. Butternut squash is reaching the end of its season, only to be proudly replaced by brightly coloured pumpkins of all shapes and forms, another beautifully versatile vegetable. If you’re into pumpkin pie – and why shouldn't you be – don’t fall for the tinned variety, usually imported from across the Atlantic. Buy a fresh, locally produced pumpkin and all that’s left to do is plonk it in the oven.
Wild specimen: October gatheringAsk anyone about autumn and soon enough roasted chestnuts will pop up in conversation. Perhaps not a nutritional powerhouse, chestnuts are a beautifully warming comfort food. Eat them roasted straight out of the shell, or add them to any blended soup for some rich soul-food flavour. Wild mushrooms: another gorgeous autumnal gift. If the time and knowledge required to hunt them down eludes you, swing by your local market for a more reliable supply. Yes, that includes truffles, now in season.
Sea food: October harvestsWhen we mention seasonal foods, we tend to think of fruits and vegetables. But in the UK, we are a nation of islanders. And isn’t a large sharing bowl of hot steaming mussels a wonderful thing to behold? And what of the invigorating iodine joy of freshly opened oysters? As it turns out, these are two nutritionally rich delights of Autumn. Too much sea flavour for you? Try mackerel. This excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids is also rich in B12, a vitamin which is not present in any plant-based foods.
What to Eat in October: tips and tricks
A selection of October recipesMexican(ish) Kale & Quinoa salad. If you’ve bought a pumpkin, dig out the seeds before cooking it. Rinse them, dry them and roast them to include in this glorious recipe by Cookie and Kate. Shredded beetroot with Greek yoghurt Garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, mint… these will bring alive beetroot and wash away any doubts you may have on the flavour of beets.
Pumpkin Spice Protein Porridge This is the ultimate way to use up any leftover roasted pumpkin. So much so that you may even want to roast a little too much, just for this purpose… Wild mushroom and chestnut soup Remember what we were saying about the soul-warming flavour of chestnuts? Try this wonderful soup recipe by Yeo Valley – but use fresh chestnuts.