Pumpkin Tarka Dhal

Pumpkin Tarka DhalOctober: Month of the Dead

If you read last week’s post, you’ll know that I made the decision to fully celebrate the glory that is October, and make it a full month (at least) of Halloween. So it was fortuitous I remembered just in time that I wasn’t alone in this idea, and had been on a fantastic walk around London’s hidden graveyards a couple of years ago; organised under the banner of London Month of the Dead. How brilliant is that?

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Rustic White Bean and Bacon Soup (Vegan)

Rustic White Bean and Bacon Soup

Do you find lots of your memories, and associations, belong to a particular time of the year; or even an entire season?

Last week, we were enjoying a Saturday evening pub discussion against the unlikely-for-us backdrop of a football match (England might have been playing, who knows – we were probably the only people in the room not looking the big screen directly in the eye), and the conversation settled on what our weekends were made of when we were kids.

I realised that Saturdays, and particularly those in the last quarter of the year, lay claim to a definite majority of my thoughts.

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Cinnamon Apple Tahini Cake and Cider Toffee Sauce

cinnamon apple tahini cake and cider toffee sauce

Heading off to the train this week, I took the time to notice the signs of season’s change; the washed-out blue of the sky, the growing leaf litters on the pavement, and the thin armour of a new burgundy jumper. A different quality to the air.

And as I walked, it occurred to me that autumn is taking her time this year; the approach more considered, the decay slowed to a recognisable – visible – pace.

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Fettuccine with Squash, Sage and Pecans

Fettucine with Squash, Sage and Pecans

Whoosh! Can you believe it’ll be October tomorrow? I don’t know where September has gone, but I think it’s safe to say we’re well and truly on our way to Autumn.

And with that, a new beginning. September has very much been a month of high celebration, with our two-year wedding anniversary; worry over the health of our beloved cat, Humphrey; and the escape, reflection, new experiences and relaxation that came with a wonderful walking holiday up and down the (very steep) hillsides of a Greek island.

Minds cleared and refreshed, and short-sleeves being packed away for a while, it’s time to hunker down and take stock of all the comforts and opportunities that come with a new month, and a new season. I’m certainly looking forward to making the most of some of the writing inspiration fostered through hours spent in the isolation of nature; and of course, sharing with you the new recipes I’ve been working on that embody the comforting flavours of this harvest time of year.

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Smoky Maple Tofu Bacon

Smoky Maple Tofu Bacon

Just because The Whole Ingredient is rambling around a dusty Greek island in search of olive groves and abandoned shrines, there’s no reason you should go without your weekly fix of whole-food inspiration – and this recipe comes to you just in time for a lovely September Saturday cooked breakfast…

It might be an absurdly simple recipe, but one taste of this autumn-inflected savoury delight will have it heading straight to your weekly meal rotation.

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