Last week the sign appeared. It looked innocuous until you read it. It announced the…
It is Autumn, a time when the leaves are turning brown and seeds are starting to appear on the trees. The colours at this time of year are beautiful and there is the added bonus that you can jump into piles of leaves. I like nothing more than swishing though leaves, there is something magical about the sound of them rustling around your feet. There is something exciting about finding the first conker of Autumn. As a child we used to collect sweet chestnuts to cook at home and we used to eat beechnuts when we found them.
My son and I were out wandering with the dog the other day and we came across some apple trees. We have passed this place many times before and never noticed the apple trees before. They were just growing wild.
Obviously we had to pick some, I mean what else do you do with apples? This was a totally new experience for my son.
He said to me later that he had never seen apples growing on trees before, never mind picking them. I had never really thought about this before but realised this is probably true. It ties in with new research that shows 53 percent of parents believe that modern day children have little understanding on the basic aspects of British nature and are not able to name plants and insects. I think this is rather sad and its a great excuse to get outdoors with your children and learn together. My son really enjoyed picking apples and the dog thought it was a great game. We finished off the walk by finding some blackberries as well.
Apples and blackberries, what is a girl to do? We finished our walk by making an Apple and Blackberry Strudel. AFter all what tastes nicer than food you have picked yourself?
Apple and Blackberry Strudel Recipe
- A packet of puff pastry (You can make your own if you can be bothered)
- 3 large cooking apples
- 200g brown sugar
- 200g blackberries
- 1 tsp mixed spice
- zest from 1 lemon
- 110g butter
- Preheat the oven to 200C, Gas Mark 6
- Roll out the pastry into a large square about 5mm thick and place on a greased baking tray
- Melt the butter and brush the pastry with it.
- Slice the apples into thin slices
- In a bowl mix the blackberries, lemon zest, sugar, lemon zest and mixed spice.
- Carefully spoon the mixture onto the pastry and wrap the pastry around the filling.
- Cut some slices in the top, sprinkle with caster sugar and brush with melted butter
- Bake in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes until golden brown.
We served ours with custard and it was delicious, the perfect end to a lovely walk.