The morning air has the fresh snap of a newly picked vegetable. The colours of our foods and our outdoor settings feel more focused and defined. This is the most versatile time of year, where your whims and fancies can shift with the wind.
A musky mushroom found on a forest forage will get you vibrating in tune with the earth.
The final gleaning of a fruit tree will make you feel one step closer to the hunter gatherer life we long for. Simply taking a step outside and away will clear the mind for the important things.
Our foods should always reflect the environment we produce or consume. Nothing excites more than a crisp raw vegetable, simply served cold from the temperature of the morning. Fruits still wet from the morning dew are the inspirational things chefs draw creativity from. In Japan a salad leaf is often sprayed with water to invoke this beautiful image.
The produce abound is at its most complicated at this moment of the year. This would suggest we need to be wise to use it correctly, however quite the opposite occurs. “Tell the truth but tell it slant”, this Emily Dickinson poem inspires my food style to its most endearing. Find your small take on something you love and let the nature of the ingredient do the finest work.
I will be indulging in the brassicas this week and creating something so gloriously simple that it will allow you to taste the complexity of every component. A new thing to play with for the Local Food Initiatives dinner, an excuse I did not need to be handed. Keeping the mind clean and crisp as the produce will really help.
The recipe below will feature at the Harvest Hootenanny if you are lucky enough to get tickets.
Carrots in paper
-Peel the finest carrots you can acquire.
-Toss in a little good oil and a sprinkle of salt.
-Wrap in paper using any method that works for you.
-Add a splash of a juice, wine or spirit and a pinch of whole coriander seeds.
-Seal up your paper and then toss in the oven or a steamer.
-Come back in 8 to 15 minutes to enjoy.
We cannot be accurate with the times and you should not worry.
The result is fabulous from barely cooked to almost pureed.
Perfect with any grain, starch or protein, anything except pasta though please.