Nigel Slater’s autumn fruit and nut recipes

New apples, the last summer squash, early walnuts, late berries, and wild mushrooms – it’s a brilliant time to be in the kitchenSweet young mussels, crisp new season’s nuts, wild mushrooms, early apples and late berries – could there be a better time of the year to shop for food? This month’s recipes make the most of the early nuts – the fat cobnuts and sweet walnuts – and the last of the green-fleshed summer squashes. Wild mushrooms are cooked with sweet-flesh young birds and there are berries to use too – the late blackberries and autumn raspberries for adding to roast and sautéed meat and tucking into little homemade pies and tarts. The best ingredients of the season, splendidly yet simply, on a plate. Continue...

Welcome to September’s Observer Food Monthly

This month, we have Nadine Levy Redzepi’s practical, tempting family recipes, the story of amateurs turned professional chefs at Darjeeling Express, and Simon Hopkinson’s classic cookbook Roast Chicken and Other StoriesChefs continue to intrigue and amaze us, but what fascinates me just as much (more, perhaps) is the food we cook at home. The everyday, essential sustenance we make for ourselves and those we love: an early meal for the kids; a meticulously planned celebration dinner; a slightly pissed midnight fridge raid.I am clearly not alone. The interest in cookbooks by home cooks is heartwarming, and they are often the books whose spines are in tatters and whose pages are smudged with the ghosts of dinners gone by. Continue...

Nigel Slater’s jam and pickle recipes

Making preserves can be fun. But don’t expect them to last long when they taste this good…I love sitting in the kitchen, coffee in hand, listening to jam bubbling on the stove. Another day it may be the pickling liquor lined up for bottling figs or apricots with the sting of vinegar and spices in the air.None of this means I’m the sort of person with a larder full of neatly labelled preserving jars, destined to last for months, if not years. I make preserves in small amounts, sometimes only a jar or two at a time. They don’t last long. They are not meant to. I want to get the same chutney or jam out of the cupboard day after day. I steep something in vinegar or mix it with sugar not purely to preserve it but to make something instantly delicious. Something for now, rather than later. Continue...

Nigel Slater’s sausages with fennel recipe

Plump sizzling bangers with a vivid flavour twistSet the oven to 200C/gas mark 6. In a roasting tin put 3 tbsp of olive oil then place over a medium heat. Put 500g of plump, coarse-textured sausages in the hot oil and let them cook for 5-7 minutes, turning occasionally until they are evenly coloured. Cut 2 bulbs of fennel in half and then into thick segments and add to the sausages, spooning the oil over them as they cook. When they are pale gold transfer the dish to the hot oven and leave for 45-50 minutes, or until the sausages are cooked right through and the fennel is tender. Continue...