Autumn Eating

fresh figs

The hot summer weather is at an end and so too is the glut of summer vegetables. As much as I love tomatoes and courgettes I really am looking forward to a change.

I enjoy changing my eating to match the different seasons. There are a couple of good reasons for doing this.

Firstly, seasonal foods tend to be cheaper to buy. It kind of goes with the whole glut of courgettes and tomatoes thing – they love hot summer weather and show it by growing in abundance. However they don’t like cold wintry weather so don’t grow and produce their delicious fruits. To get them to grow outside of their season a lot of effort is required on the part of the grower and that costs extra money that needs to be passed onto the end buyer.

Secondly, variety is the spice of life. As I mentioned above – I am ready for a change. It gets boring eating the same thing over and over again (even when trying to compile a 1001 Ways With… list). Also by eating a broad variety of foods it means that you are getting a great combination of essential nutrients to be healthy and happy. I say happy as well as healthy because what we eat affects not only our bodies but also our overall well-being. As the evenings close in, now that daylight savings has ended, it is nice to start preparing and eating hearty, warming foods. I love turning the oven on and fill the house with delicious smells. Autumn is a lovely time to combine a bit of winter with the tail-end of summer. Salads are still a fabulous way to include plenty of vegetables to be getting your 5+ a day but you can mix the salads up a bit.

Great autumn salad options:

  • A simple roast vegetable salad, mix it up a bit by adding in some quinoa and lots of fresh herbs.
  • Roasted beetroot and spinach, with pear, walnuts and shaved parmesan.
  • Warm potato or kumara salad with sour cream and fresh herbs.

Autumn also brings a new selection of fruits. Berries and stone fruits are pretty much gone now but new seasons apples and pears are starting to appear. Along with feijoas, figs and persimmons. These fruits are a lovely addition to the table. Don’t forget fruits can be used for more than desserts or sweet treats, they can add a delicious sweet contrast in savoury dishes or make fantastic chutneys as well as jams.

Make sure you eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits to help ward off any winter ills. Eating well helps to support your immune system, and fruits and vegetables are full of antioxidants that help maintain a healthy immune system.

And don’t forget to sneak in some exercise outside too. Now that the strong summer sun has toned down a little you can get a little more sunshine to help boost your vitamin D levels. A walk first thing in the morning or later in the afternoon/evening is gorgeous at this time of the year.

Please pop along to the Nicole's Nutrition Kitchen facebook page to find (or even share) some autumn inspired dishes.

Happy Autumn Eating!