Seasonal foods for July

It’s a delicious month, with a wealth of ingredients bursting with colour and flavour. In fact it’s almost rude not to get stuck in.

What’s in season in July?

Fruit: bilberries, blueberries, cherries, currants (black, red and white), elderflowers, gooseberries, loganberries, raspberries, strawberries and wild strawberries. Imported apricots, figs, melons, nectarines, pinapples, watermelon.

Vegetables: aubergines, basil, baby turnips, broad beans, broccoli, celery, chives, courgettes and courgette flowers, cucumbers, dill, fennel, fresh garlic, globe artichokes, green beans, horseradish, kohlrabi, lamb’s lettuce, lettuce, mint, new potatoes, parsley, peas, peppers, radishes, rocket, samphire, sorrel, spinach, spring onions, summer cabbage, summer squash, tomatoes, watercress.

Fish and shellfish: black bream, brown crab (hen), brown and rainbow trout, cuttlefish, early plaice and sole, herring, lobster, mackerel, Mediterranean sardines, prawns, pike, pilchards, pollack, scallops, Scottish squid, sea bass, sea trout, shrimps, signal crayfish, spider crab, young salmon (grilse). Many say this is the best season for crab, lobster, mackerel, prawns and shrimps.

Meat, poultry and game: Not a special month for any particular meat or game.

Cheeses: Stinking Bishop, British goats’ cheese. Crottin de Chavignol, Saint Remy, Tomme Vaudoise, Valencay. Buffalo mozzarella.

So far this month I’ve already tucked into some pan-fried scallops, a huge salad with tomatoes and mozzarella, and courgette flowers stuffed with goats’ cheese.

What next? If the sun comes back it might be time for a BBQ with some herby mackerel, followed by a summer pudding with plenty of cherries or some char-grilled pineapple slices with brown sugar, rum and cream.

What are you going to cook?

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