We don't need a dedicated fortnight to celebrate the wonders of British food but it's a good excuse. This year's runs from 18 September to 3 October, and I will try to indulge in as much lovely British food as possible, not with any especially patriotic fervour, just because it's harvest time and it's mouthwateringly lovely! I'm sure it's no coincidence that it's at this time of year with a huge glut of British food...all these are in season now...blackberries, plums, apples, damsons, pears, beetroot, broccoli, sprouts (just starting but probably not at their best for a month or two yet), cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, chard, celery, start of the leeks, parsnips, spinach. Plus there's still the end of the summer produce knocking about...raspberries, apricots, beans, tomatoes...what a wonderful feast!
It is also a great way to support the local economy, especially local farmers, local markets, local eateries and local independent shops.
Great examples of British food is turned out every day at Canteen, but that's in London, out of regular grasp of us northerners. I last visited Canteen Spitalfields in July and had a fantastic chicken, tarragon and walnut salad followed by a very adult blackcurrant jelly, absolutely zinging with flavour. I was thrilled when they published their very own cookery book called Great British food, which not only has stacks of fabulous recipes but looks really quite spiffing too - a cover of brown paper, black old fashioned font and the strapline on the back just sums it up perfectly - seasonal British all-day dining. The inside pages front and back (not sure about proper term for these) are a gorgeous duck egg blue with the other pages a speckled off-white, with glorious photos, wittily taken with stuffed animals. The recipes themselves are delicious! I wouldn't normally use Amazon, preferring to shop in a real shop where possible, but Canteen themselves direct to Amazon and it includes pictures including of the blackcurrant jelly recipe. Enjoy!