Welcome to September. The kids start going back to school, holidays start being a dream of the past… or the thing to look forward to in the now “quieter” period and for many, it’s the start of something new. Whether it is starting a new hobby or picking up old ones, September for many is treated as a catalyst or gateway into something where we can all make a change and go for something new.
Our supper club wants to help you there, so don’t be afraid to try new things and experiment with great flavour combinations and for some, exciting new ones as well.
September is also the time that we start to get a lot of enquiries about December and the Christmas rush to have a new kitchen before the festivities… well, we can help. Why not drop us a line and see how we can help you before the true cooking season comes into full swing!
Back to our supper club and the exciting things that we can make together in this, one of the best months of the year for some new and delicious ingredients to hit our shelves. Where possible, we recommend buying local as you will find great deals and also help support your local economy; we are after all, more than a kitchen company, we want to bring cooks and communities together through food.
What are the ingredients on the menu?
September is the month to really get cooking with fantastic selections of game and hunted fayre. Things like partridge, wild duck, grouse, and venison are all on the menu; Michelin starred chef, Tom Kitchin has released a great book on how to cook these cuts and what you shouldn’t be fearing when you do.
We also have veg that packs a punch on the flavour scale as well. Beetroot which is nearing the end of picking to cucumbers and cabbage can all be used to add texture and flavour to the dishes you’re cooking up.
Finally, we have the great fruit picking season finishing for some types whilst others are just starting. Yes, it’s Bramley apples and those apple trees will give us an abundance this year with a hot spring and damp summer the trees are ripening with the great selections that we missed last year. There are also pears, plums and damsons that need picking this time of the year.
Wild mushrooms are in season this time of the year and prove to be very popular, especially for the adventurous cook. A lot of people fear the “wild” part of wild mushrooms, so here is our tip. Let a professional forager get them. There are farm shops and farmers markets where you have professionals that deal with it so there is nothing to fear if you went and did it yourself and weren’t sure; it really is worth trying them once though. They taste fab.
So our first recipe comes from Delicious magazine, mushroom, potato and chorizo fry up. This can be used as a starter or main or even side for those with a great appetite, but the combination of flavour and texture makes it something you don’t want to miss.
We also love this recipe by Jamie Oliver, Sourdough Mushroom Bruschetta. A great wild porcini or japanese oyster variety work brilliantly with this dish and they are so easy to make and perfect for a dinner party that you can prepare in advance and finish off when your guests arrive.
For those not keen on funghi however, never fear. Figs are also in season and are great for bringing flavour, colour and those important vitamins and minerals to your plate. This recipe for pan fried figs, serrano ham and cheese on toast is precisely what the month ordered… delicious!
We really want to support the game dishes this month and so our mains focus is going to be a little more focused on this great ingredient. If you’re unsure where to go for your game produce, try your local butcher! They can order it or help you with finding suppliers.
For venison we have two incredible recipes. If you’ve never made a ragu the way the Italians intended then you don’t know what you’re missing out on. This tagliatelle with venison ragu is the stuff that pasta fans dream of. Slow cooked, flaking game in a rich tomato based sauce that is delivered with layers of flavour from spices, fresh vegetables and a cooking time that lets you sit back and relax.
Our second game/venison dish is this wonderful rack of venison with haggis really is the best of Scotland on a plate. Yes, it’s extravagant, yes it looks like it will take patience to perfect but how could you not look at this and not want to eat it… and thus, make it?!
If you want to try a wine that goes perfect with a piece of game, venison in particular then you want to be going towards a Pinot Noir or even a new world Merlot which brings out a little more spice and is softer to match with the smokey flavours that game takes on during cooking.
For those that don’t want game but the best of British vegetables then this is the dish for you. Orecchiette (which means little ears in English) with butternut squash, sage and hazelnut… It is divine and a must try for this September month.
Looking for something a little different, then damsons are the fruit for you. Harder to use in a crumble because of the bitterness, they make however desserts that deserve their own standing ovation.
This damson and sour cream tart is the thing you need in your September cooking repertoire, why? It has a bit of everything but most importantly it is an indulgent way to really get to love and delight in this picked fruit. You really must try it. If you want to keep the summer alive, then this damson and clotted ice cream is the thing for you; by the way, you don’t have to serve it in a teacup but then again, why would you not want to after seeing it this way?
Ok, bramley apples, we’ve not forgotten you. Actually, we love you and we want to do you some justice so our September and October will have more features on one of the best British fruits this nation has given us.
So what about this? Apple strudel… a warming love fest of apples and everything that can go with it. Flaky pastry with sweet icing sugar, raisins, berries; it’s a smorgasbord of everything we love in one place. How can you not like it?
We know, we know. No mention of crumble… watch this space as we will be all over it later this September.
These are our selections for this month. Have a great September feast and let us know what is on your menu!