Daily Archives: 8 October 2012

Autumn – the best season in Europe?

Autumn is my favourite season

It has been a glorious weekend. As I have three small children I am always up early – rarely by choice – but yesterday it was a pleasure.

The view from the kitchen window – sipping my coffee in an attempt to wake up – showed the valley shrouded in mist, bathed in autumnal sunshine with russet coloured trees dotted along the horizon.

Autumn is my favourite season, I love the change
in temperature, the gorgeous colours and the excuse
to unpack my favourite snuggly clothes!

It has got me thinking about the places I have visited in the autumn and some of the delicious seasonal meals I have eaten whilst on my travels.

In England, one of my favourite haunts is Chatsworth, which is breathtakingly beautiful in October. One year, I had the pleasure of bumping into Antony Gormley whilst admiring a sculpture exhibition. I enjoyed a wonderful wander around the gardens and a delicious roast beef dinner – with the most AMAZING roast potatoes in the estate restaurant.

For beauty, an autumnal Lake District is hard to beat. One climb to Catbells above Derwentwater particularly sticks in my mind – complete with a delicious flapjack on the summit courtesy of a very kind couple we bumped into on the final scramble to the top.

A little further afield, just a short budget plane journey took us to the Bienniale in Venice – a wonderfully eclectic collaboration of art from all around the globe. We had a wonderful few days in the autumn sunshine soaking up the sights, enjoying a proper Italian Bolognese and indulging the occasional ice cream.

Another gorgeous place to visit this month is Bavaria, Germany. The colours in this region are out-of-this-world, especially around the fairytale Neuschwanstein Castle. A coffee and slice of strudel in a café in quaint Dinkelsbuhl will always be on my list of favourite cake moments!

So, though the beauty of my surroundings leaves its
indelible mark on me, it’s the food on my travels that
leaves a lasting impression too.

I’d love to hear about your favourite autumnal stamping ground and the meals you have enjoyed there.

Autumnal recipes from the Dairy Diary and Dairy Cookbooks


I’d like to some of my favourite autumnal recipes from Dairy cookbooks and Dairy Diaries… Sausages Baked with Apples & Squash, Red Cabbage Salad and Plum Streusal Tart.

Sausages baked with apples & squash

Sausages baked with apples & squash recipe

Autumnal squash and spiced apple baked with sausage and maple syrup.

Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 30 minutes
Calories per portion 512 Kcal
Fat per portion 34g of which saturated 10g
Serves 4

Butternut squash or pumpkin 1 small
Red onion 1, peeled and thickly sliced
Granny Smith apples 2, cored, peeled and thickly sliced
Lemon juice 2 tbsp
Maple syrup 2 tbsp
Ground cinnamon 1 tsp
Vegetable oil 2 tbsp
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Thick pork sausages 8
Chopped parsley 2 tbsp

1 Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Line a medium-sized roasting tin with baking parchment.

2 Cut the squash or pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds. Slice off the skin and then cut into wedges about 2cm (¾in) thick. Arrange evenly in the tin with the onion and apple slices.

3 In a small bowl, mix together the lemon juice, maple syrup, cinnamon and oil, and drizzle over the vegetables, carefully mixing them on the tray to coat them in the mixture. Season well. Arrange the sausages on top and bake with the vegetables for about 30 minutes, turning occasionally, until tender and cooked through.

4 Drain well, sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with a green salad and some crusty bread.

Cook’s tip 
Maple syrup adds a subtle sweetness, but it is quite expensive. For a more economical version, use 2 tablespoons light brown sugar.
A Dairy Cookbook recipe.

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