Autumnal Recipes – Part One
I’m amazed it’s time for Autumnal Recipes again. Where has the year gone? Only just over two months to go until Christmas. Help! Kidding aside, for an awful lot of people in the world, this year is not one to remember kindly – it’s one we all would like to see disappear from our memories. Roll on the year 2018, and hope that for many it will be a better place.
For myself, it’s been a bit of a challenge, again. But the Chemotherapy is finished, and, happily, it has shrunk the size of my ‘lump’. Things are looking up, my appetite should come back quickly, along with my hair hopefully, and longing to get back in my garden and make it tidy and interesting again. Recipes have been a problem, and Erik has had to take over the kitchen again, although I have told him he has to give it back to me any day now! I think I am going to have a struggle to make my mark again as chief chef and bottle washer, but I can be a tough cookie, so watch this space.
Much as I love Spring and Summer Recipes, I also love the comfort of Autumnal Recipes, evoking warm, winter woolies and lighting the log burner for the first time. Somehow our cosy lounge, decorated in pale pink and Moroccan rich red, and full of squashy settees overloaded with cushions is the perfect place to collapse after a hard day’s work, and after a platter of simple Autumnal food. So here is a recipe I am convinced my tastebuds will allow, and it is brilliant for this time of year.
Chicken & Chestnuts in Cider Sauce Recipe
- 2 free-range chicken breasts with skin on
- Small eating apple, cored and sliced into thin segments
- 75g vacuum-packed chestnuts, roughly chopped (Merchant Gourmet or similar from Supermarkets)
- 150ml dry cider
- 75g half-fat creme fraiche
- Chicken stock
- Place a medium, non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Season the chicken breasts, add to the hot pan, skin-side down, and cook for 3-4 minutes, then turn over and brown for 2 minutes more. Remove and set aside.
- Add the apple and chopped chestnuts to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring, until golden. Remove and set aside.
- Place the browned chicken breasts, skin-side up, in the pan and pour in the cider. Reduce the heat slightly and simmer for 12-15 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
- Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the creme fraiche, the apple and chestnuts, and check the seasoning.
- Divide the chicken between the plates, spoon over the cider sauce and serve.
Another Autumnal Recipe that appeals to me is one for a Dessert. It both looks and sounds delicious.
Chestnut & Almond Cream Recipe
- 25g blanched almonds
- 225g canned chestnut puree
- 100g caster sugar
- 299ml creme fraiche
- Runny honey (chestnut if possible) to drizzle
- Cover the blanched almonds with boiling water and soak for 19 minutes. Drain and slice lengthways into thin shards.
- Preheat the oven to 200C/fan180C/gas6. Spread the nuts on a baking tray and roast for 6-7 minutes until golden. Remove from oven and leave to cool.
- Put the chestnut puree in a small pan over a gentle heat and warm through - don't let it get too hot. Beat in the sugar (The puree will go glossy and dark). Transfer to a bowl and leave to cool.
- Drop alternate teaspoonfuls of the chestnut puree and creme fraiche into 4 x 150ml dessert glasses (for similar) and swirl with the handle of a spoon. Drizzle with a little honey and scatter the golden almond slivers on top to serve.
Well, here are two Autumnal Recipes I feel my appetite will allow me to eat. I’m really looking forward to the Chicken & Chestnuts in Cider Sauce, and I just happen to have a big bag of Cavolo Nero kale to accompany it. I will probably just give it a good wash and dry, then tear it into shreds and stir -fry it in a tiny bit of oil and butter, and throw in some chilli flakes just to give it a ‘kick’. The Chestnut & Almond Cream dessert sounds amazing – I love Almonds and most nuts now, but I think because of the Creme Fraiche in both recipes, I will leave the Dessert for a different meal.
Lots more Autumnal Recipes to come, so, if you’re like me, and enjoy this Autumnal food, keep watching, (and keep warm).