Summer’s nearly over, but we’re getting read for autumn. Here at the Swettenham Arms it’s one of our favourite seasons, and we’re having fun at the moment putting together a fantastic autumn menu for you to try. Here’s what we love about this season:
1. Autumn leaves
Not only do they look beautiful when they’re still on the trees, just starting to fade from green to red, gold and brown, we also love them when they’re on the ground. Whether you’re young or just young at heart, nothing beats pulling on a pair of boots and going for a really autumny walk, scuffling through ankle-deep leaves and kicking them up. Leaves are such pretty things, too – perfect for children’s art projects, making collages or using to line a cheese plate for a seasonal dinner party.
Sweet chestnuts are delicious. Go out foraging with a basket, and gather chestnuts that have already shed their spiky shell to save you fingers. When you get home, boil them in water for ten to fifteen minutes until the shells are soft and shell them. Then, you can either pop them in the freezer for later or make a chestnut casserole – fry chopped onions, mushrooms and thyme together, stir in a little flour, pour in some stock and wine and add the chestnuts. Simmer for twenty minutes, and serve with crusty bread.
3. Long walks
At this time of year, the locals countryside’s looking particularly spectacular with the changing leaves mirrored in the waters of the River Dane. Get out and about for a long ramble, then end up at the Swettenham Arms for a well-deserved lunch.
4. Seasonal food
Baking apples, root vegetables, venison, lamb, grouse, damsons, butternut squash, duck – is your mouth watering yet?
5. Real fires
We love eating outside in the summer – the sun, the drone of the insects in the lavender and the iced drinks make for a lazy dining experience. We think it’s just as nice, though, to cosy up by a real fire such as the one in our bar. There’s nothing nicer than a plate of lovely home-cooked seasonal food, a glass of real ale, a fireside and a free afternoon ahead of you – so here’s to autumn.