Seasonal foods in August

Here’s an updated list of August seasonal foods. It can vary slightly from year to year because of variations in the weather, but the idea remains the same. You can usually buy cheaper ingredients more cheaply, and if there are gluts then you can also treat yourself to a little luxury for less.

With the more expensive ingredients you can often buy smaller amounts of things too, especially if you’re buying at market stalls or at a cheese counter. There’s nothing quite so nice as a sliver of good cheese, or a few fancy mushrooms or prawns or whatever. The stronger the flavour, the less of an ingredient you need.

Fruit: apricots, bilberries, blackberries, blueberries, cherries, currants (black, red, white), early apples, early damsons, figs, greengages, gooseberries, loganberries, peaches, plums, raspberries, strawberries and wild strawberries. Imported melons and nectarines.

Vegetables: aubergines, basil, beetroot, last few broad beans, broccoli and calabrese, carrots, celery, chard, chillies, chives, courgettes, cucumbers, fennel, globe artichokes, green beans (runner, dwarf and French), horseradish, kohlrabi, lamb’s lettuce, lettuce, mushrooms (ceps, chanterelles, field, oyster, porcini, puffball, shaggy ink cap), new potatoes, onions, peas, peppers, radishes, rocket, samphire, shallots, sorrel, spinach, spring onions, summer squash, sweetcorn, tarragon, tomatoes, turnips, watercress.

Fish and shellfish: black bream, brown and rainbow trout, brown crab, crayfish, Dover sole, haddock, herring, john dory, lobster, pilchards, pollack, prawns, red and grey mullet, salmon, sea bass, squid.

Meat, poultry and game: grouse from the 12th, hare at its best.

Cheeses: Farmhouse Cheddar, British goats’ cheese. Chaource, Charolles, Valencay.

I think I’m going to be making a vegetable chilli next week, with home grown cayenne chillies, tomatoes, courgettes and whatever else is knocking around in the bottom of the fridge, plus an econo can of kidney beans and some strong cheddar on the top. If it keeps on raining I might also be making a sort-of shepherd’s pie, with carrots, onions and mushrooms, with some mustard mash on the top and greens on the side.

What are you going to cook?

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