A Chef’s Recipe For Seasonal Crab Apple Jam

November 2019Words by Mr Nicholas Balfe

Photograph courtesy of Salon

In the summer cooking is all about being quick and efficient. The kitchen is no place to be when the sun is belting down outside and the park or garden is a more alluring alternative. It’s all about dishes that involve simple cooking, or better still: no cooking at all.

As the clocks turn back and the weather turns cold, that all changes, however. In autumn and winter, pottering in the kitchen makes me feel calm, meditative and it’s in keeping with the primal need to hibernate and stockpile. At this time of year, I take time over my cooking. An afternoon with a cast-iron pot bubbling on the back burner or a casserole gently ticking over in the oven is well spent.

Autumn is also the time for preserving. Now is the time to make the most of what’s around before it’s gone for another year. Think: chutneys, jams and jellies, made with orchard fruits and hedgerow berries, as well as syrups, infusions and pickles. Making these recipes is an investment, but worth the reward, which with luck will keep you going through winter…