Changing Seasons

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Autumn seems more glorious than ever this year. Summer is lingering a little longer than usual, stopping to have a dance with autumn, leaves falling through bright, golden sunshine as they twirl together, before it leaves us for another year.

On the last weekend of September it was so warm and sunny that Rob and I took off in the car with our old dog Charlie and a small picnic and drove to spot near Lullingstone castle. It was late afternoon when we arrived and we watched the sun set behind the trees as we lay out on the rug. It was quite perfect.

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But at the start of this week it felt like autumn had truly taken hold. We had grey, rainy days and cold evenings, prompting the turning on of the central heating and the lighting of candles to keep us warm and snug. Yet the week is ending on a sunnier note. Today I’ve been out in the garden, sitting on cushions on the old, weathered bench, mug of steaming Earl Grey tea in one hand, Nigel Slater’s new book, ‘Tender: A Cook and His Vegetable Patch’, in the other. At one point it was so warm I had to take off my jumper but later on I had to go and get a blanket to wrap round me; such is the changeable nature of the weather at the moment.

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The weather may be undecided but my food choices are very much autumnal right now. I’m baking pumpkins, eating figs with cheeses and crusty bread, and roasting pork. The markets and the shops are overflowing and my kitchen is beckoning; what a great time of year this is.

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  1. Jamie
    October 10, 2009 / 9:08 pm

    I love Autumn, it's my favorite season. I haven't started my Fall baking yet. I love cooking with pumpkins, cranberries, apples, etc. You guys went on the perfect picnic: husband, dog and I often go out to the country for improv picnics like that. Beautiful!

  2. Teresa
    October 10, 2009 / 11:17 pm

    Indeed we're being blessed with a glorious Autumn world wide… Summer decided to prolong its stay and somehow Winter didn't decided to join the party and… mess it :D.
    Here I am feeling jealous of your wraping in a bench – there's something magical when, in middle of nature, your face gets cold by the wind and your body stays wraped and cosy.
    I'm getting even and go looking for my recipe of a delicious cake of dry figs, honey and brandy for my own Earl Grey Tea Cup.
    Take Care!

  3. flowrgirl1
    October 11, 2009 / 2:05 am

    Wonderful photos. It is a lovely time of the year. Looks like it was a perfect day!

  4. Mary
    October 11, 2009 / 4:02 pm

    Your photos are really lovely. Autumn is not my favorite season, but its arrival is. Our nights turn really cold and the aroma of madrone from wood stoves fills the valley. I love to watch plumes of smoke rising from chimneys like witches fingers. By noon it will be warm again and the cycle will repeat itself until our winter rains begin. Enjoy your baking.

  5. Janice
    October 11, 2009 / 9:22 pm

    Very brave to go on a picnic at this time of year, the weather can change so quickly. Mind you it's been like that for us all summer in Scotland. We have had some really nice days but already there is frost in the mornings and it chills down quickly by 3 or 4 o'clock. Thanks for sharing your picnic, those figs look lovely.

  6. Alex
    October 12, 2009 / 12:41 pm

    If I manage an Autumn picnic I always feel doubly priveledged!

    Summer picnics are a right whereas September ones feel more special and hard-earned (hardly the most eloquent way of describing it but you know what I mean!)

  7. spoony g
    October 13, 2009 / 3:45 am

    Oh my these are such crisp and gorgeous photos!!,…your articles make intrigued to experiment with this delicious types of cooking!! thANK YOU!

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