If you’re anything like me, when you think of autumn, you’re likely to think of deep reds, browns, wrapped up walks and big pots of hot food cooking on the stove.
For me, this is also the time of year to bring out all of those lovely autumnal spices that bring warmth and depth to recipes. From mid-September onwards, I like to cook with more allspice, cardamon, cinnamon or cassia bark, cumin and cloves, and of course, it’s the right time of year to get some beautifully in-season pumpkins, squash and root vegetables.
It’s all about comfort food at this time of the year: summer is gone and although we’re not quite in the depths of winter, we know we’re headed that way very soon. So anything and everything that brings us joy, warmth and a feeling of coziness is welcome at the table. Growing up, we’d eat a lot of lentil and chickpea dishes as the nights drew in, as these healthy veggies dishes were filling, packed with protein and great for re-heating the day after.
Autumn makes me want to tuck into a seasonal feast of soups, stews, curries and of course, the obligatory Spiced Pumpkin Latte as the nights draw in. You’ll likely notice that your body will start to automatically crave these sorts of foods – we instinctively know what we need to get us through the colder months. Here’s our selection of autumnal awesomeness to see you through till December:
This is one of those classic slow cooked recipes that you can bob in the oven before heading out on a wrapped up woodland walk. When you come home, your kitchen will be filled with the aromas of this cinnamon-rich stew. And, after you’ve devoured a bowl, you can hunker down with a full belly and blanket to enjoy the evening.
There is literally no better way to cook up a seasonal storm. My mum’s famous Dal Makhani is one of those recipes that takes a while to prepare, but once you’ve got it on the hob you can just leave all of those lovely flavours to combine and develop. The best thing about this recipe – aside from the taste – is that you get to freeze some for another day!
Sweet Potatoes are at their best during the autumnal months and so it’s a good idea to grab some if you see them. They work great as a side to your dishes, simply roasted, or as a late night snack when only a carb hit will do. I love mine tossed in Ras El Hanout like in this recipe and then roasted in the oven, but you can swap this for any of your favourite spice blends. The addition of spinach in this recipe is an extra vitamin boost too! Serve with a spoonful of garlic mayo for a simple yet hearty treat.
Simple. Hearty. Need I say more? This recipe is perfect for veggies and vegans, and meat eaters will love it too. What’s more, the ingredients are cheap, easy to get hold of and you won’t be standing over the hob for ages waiting for your dinner! Serve with some gorgeous naan bread to mop up the juices and your belly will thank you for the rest of the day.
Does anything say autumn more than the Spiced Pumpkin Latte? A few years back I spent a quiet autumnal afternoon perfecting this recipe and it’s now my go-to autumnal pick me up! Definitely worth giving this a go as soon as you feel a nip in the air.
Will you be trying any of these recipes? We’d love to see what you create! Tag us in on socials @spicekitchenuk