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Autumn Food

Where to savour the best seasonal dishes this autumn

Sunday 15 May, 2022

Where to savour the best seasonal dishes this autumn

As the weather cools, get inspired to try new meals and menus

Autumn in Sydney is a moving feast. The weather surprises us on a daily basis – it can be super chilly one moment only to be followed by a warm, sunny spell that feels like summer all over again.

If the cooler weather means you’re spending more time indoors, it could be a great opportunity to test your skills in the kitchen by swapping out your old standard recipes with a few interesting new ones.

And when you do feel the urge to get out and about, treating yourself to a cosy meal and glass of red at a local restaurant or café is a great way to while away the hours on an autumn day.

What’s in season for autumn?

While a total switch to soups and stews may not be on the cards quite yet, our bodies definitely crave something a little more substantial and comforting as the temperature drops.

Autumn produce fills the gap between the hot and cold months perfectly as our eating habits shift with the change of season. At this time, cooking with earthy, colourful fruits and vegetables provides an immune system boost, enhances our mood and helps us feel balanced.

Autumn is the perfect season for root vegetables like beetroot, pumpkin, sweet potato and brussels sprouts. Resist the temptation to serve the same old sides of steamed or boiled veggies by experimenting with new recipes like this tender and caramelised medley of brussels sprouts, parsnips and carrots with maple and fresh thyme.

Mushrooms also make a big showing both for their unique flavour and, as recipes like this one shows, their versatility as a meat substitute.

When it comes to fruit, the summer staples we’ve been devouring for months (like watermelon, mangoes and cherries) are swapped out by autumn fruits bowls filled with navel oranges, apples of all varieties, mandarins and delicious pears. Persimmons, pomegranates, quinces and rhubarb also provide a welcome change with their bursts of flavour and colour.

Get your fruit and dessert fix together with a delicious crumble featuring pear, apple or rhubarb as the star ingredient. Woolworths Kiaora Place has all the ingredients (and the recipes) you need.

Choose a top-notch local butcher or providore to source the best ingredients for meat and poultry-based dishes. 1888 Certified has the ultimate “paddock to plate” produce and recipes that range from a simple, perfectly-cooked steak to this Lao-style lamb shanks and sticky rice soup, which is ideal for the cooler months.

Autumn is the perfect time to treat yourself to a meal out

Autumn provides a wonderful opportunity to bundle up and watch the passing parade over a warming meal at your local restaurant or café.

In Double Bay, Little Jean has developed a well-earned reputuation for innovative seasonal dishes based on the use of fresh, local produce. Try the delicious half-chicken roasted with pomme purée and seasonal vegetables, or the Beaumont Ranges eye fillet with crispy risotto, onion jam, aioli and red wine jus. Add a glass of local red or pinot noir and a decadent house-made dessert, and you have the ultimate autumn meal.

And if autumn is time for comfort food, nothing delivers the feel-good factor quite like a serving of China Diner’s steaming hot dumplings. Their other flavoursome, satisfying dishes like the classic Five Spice Duck Pancakes – served with yummy hoisin sauce, cucumber and shallots – will also hit the spot.

And what could be a more fitting way to say goodbye to the working week and hello to a crisp autumn weekend than a brunch or lunch at White Rabbit? The hearty Spanish Breakfast is packed with flavour and spices and is the perfect indulgence for a chilly autumn's morning. For lunch, you can’t go past the delicious risotto of wild mushrooms topped with Parmesan, gremolata, hazelnuts and fried sage.