Autumn Flavours: What’s in Season
With the colder weather and darker nights beginning to creep in on us, we have an array of Autumn’s finest fresh produce coming into season and ready to compliment your menus.
Autumn marks the season to enjoy a variety of beans and legumes. One in particular is the Barlotti bean. First bred in Colombia as the cargamanto, the Barlotti beans is also known as the cranberry bean, roman bean or rosecoco bean. Borlotti beans are widely used in Italian cooking.
Plump Borlotti beans have a rich creaminess to them, similar to a cannellini bean, which is also in the kidney bean family. There’s a hint of nutty sweetness to the legume. It also has a smooth texture, making it a bean that works well cold, hot and at room temperature.
The Jerusalem artichoke is actually a species of sunflower with a lumpy, brown-skinned tuber that often resembles a ginger root. They flower in late August and September and the flowers are a bright and colourful yellow.
Although not widely used, the Jerusalem artichoke is an inexpensive and versatile food with a sweet, nutty flavour, reminiscent of water chestnuts.
A small fruit with vibrant dark blue skin and a strong, sour flavour, damsons are similar to plums and a member of the rose family. The sweet fruits were introduced by the Romans and became incredibly popular in Victorian times. They are easy to grow and maintain, and this is perhaps why damsons have seen a resurgence of interest by consumers in the last couple of years and best enjoyed in September.
Nectarines are a type of peach, distinguished by a genetic mutation that gives them a smooth, firm skin on the outside. On top of that, a ripe nectarine is slightly more acidic and sour than a peach. Nectarine season kicks off at the end of Summer through to late September. Nectarines are grown all throughout the warm, mild regions of the Northern and Southern hemispheres. Corsica nectarines are native to and named after the small French island in the Mediterranean, and along with peaches, the nectarines are one of the most popular fruits found on the island, predominately consumed fresh as a sweet snack.