Seasonal eating

Amazing Autumn Tart

Amazing Autumn Tart

Today is shaping up to be a beautiful Autumn day, cool but with just enough sun to keep your back warm. The change of seasons has brought an exciting new posse of foods to enjoy at their peak. In Australia these foods include pumpkin, pomegranates, apples, onions, broccoli, mushrooms, sage, thyme, figs and nuts. Yummo!! And because they are in season, they will be at their peak in terms of flavour and nutritional content. Awesome.

To celebrate, why not make this wonderful Autumn Tart, bursting with the goodness of these seasonal beauties!

I’ll deal with just a few here. Firstly pumpkin. Jam packed with beta-carotene, (a pre-cursor to vitamin A) it helps to nourish and protect your skin, prevent oxidation, assist immune function, and also has some groovy anti-carcinogenic activity. Pumpkin is also generously endowed with┬áVitamin C, E, folate, calcium and magnesium.

Broccoli has a nutrient profile very similar to pumpkin, containing an even higher amount of beta-carotene. Along with the Vitamin C, E, folate, calcium and magnesium, it is also naturally high in sulphur, iron, B-vitamins and chlorophyll – try to keep the cooking to a minimum to retain as much of these qualities as you can.

And finally, walnuts! Loaded with omega-3s these little brain-shaped beauties are just fabulous. Hosting a plethora of goodies including protein, manganese, selenium, zinc, magnesium and iron, walnuts nourish the adrenal glands, kidneys and brain, and enrich sperm – fab!

So onto some cooking. Pastry is something that is often thrown straight into the too hard basket – but it is actually super easy to make, and SO worth it!

I have used spelt flour here for added nutrients and ease of digestion, but feel free to use whole wheat if you prefer. This amount makes about 12 little tarts.

You will

How to make jam

How to make jam

Making jam may not seem like the most nutritionally dense activity, but as a new jam lover I felt that it was an appropriate first post! I’m usually much more of a tahini and honey or nut spread kinda girl, but after making a batch of mouthwatering strawberry and blueberry jam for christmas presents, I am still enjoying the fruits of my labour – ha! Home-made jam on some sort of dense sourdough with butter has served as a delightful change – it makes me feel all grown up and lady-like!

Preserving is such a wonderful way to use ripe fruit, changing its form into something you  can enjoy for months. Traditionally we have used this process of slowing the decay of food so that it was available even when the fruit was out of season. Supermarkets and the like have severed this connection with seasonal eating by making anything available year-round, leading us to pay more and sacrifice taste and quality. Reconnecting with seasonal eating is so important not only for taste and quality, but it costs less. For more info on which fruits and vegetables are in season, click here.

Home-made jam is unbelievably delicious, and inexpensive to make.

There are loads of recipes around, but I love Jude Blereau’s universal jam recipe from Coming Home to Eat. It is a low sugar jam recipe that gives such an amazing result, my mouth is watering as I write this!

Most jam recipes use equal quantities of sugar and fruit by weight. You really don’t need this much sugar, but by reducing the sugar content you will get a jam that is less firm, or has a softer ‘set’ than commercial types. I like this though.

Also note that if you are making jam with low pectin and …