Cooking Season

Anyone who knows me knows these two things: I love to cook, and I love Autumn.

In many ways, these two things go hand-in-hand. As the air gets colder, leaves change color, and harvest’s bounties pour into the market, appetites re-awaken for the holiday season.

There is something about colder weather that makes you crave warm, hearty meals. The colorful produce found at farmer’s markets or even the local grocery store certainly trigger that deep, soulful hunger as well. Bright orange pumpkins and delectably curvy squash, robust potatoes, juicy apples and spicy peppers all beckon to be taken home and made into delicious dishes. Who am I to resist the temptation?

From September through December I throw myself into my kitchen. Weekly soups and stews, savory tarts and casseroles, and mouth-watering, roasted meals accompanied with wine fill my chilly evenings. The smell of baking spice for sweeter treats fill my days. With apricots and peaches from neighbor’s generous tress I make harvest muffins in September. With happy pumpkins carefully selected from a local patch, I bake Halloween cookies. With pecans and whisky imported from the south I craft a pie for Friends-giving dinner. And, with frozen fruits from the summer’s end I bake delectable dark-fruit brownies for the Christmas countdown.

Cooking and baking during the colder months gives me as much joy as they holidays that dot the calendar. It’s chance to unleash a creative, nurturing, pride and joy that few other hobbies can replicate in the same way. Whether my love of the kitchen contributes to my love of the season, or whether they are separate all together, few deny that autumn is the start of cooking season. So, to me, autumn and the kitchen are one in the same.

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