The joy of autumn

Here in the northern hemisphere, autumn has arrived. Children have returned to school, and I have planted out autumn/winter bedding plants. It is a privilege of living where we are in the UK that the winters are never so severe that all the plants die back. It is a curse of living where we are in the UK that the weeds often grow at a rate that well outpaces any plants we put in. Like every farmer in the world, we have to deal with what we have and where we have it, but on a much smaller scale.  

The heathers and the cyclamen have been put in. Broad beans are being readied for their annual trip to the allotment, where they will overwinter and hopefully enrich the soil in the meantime. I will move manure around for the plot as well. My other project is to get the water butt connectors reorganised and re-attached before the next set of downpours.  

All this is making for warm food indoors. Last night, it was a tomato soup made from the allotment tomatoes, plus a grating of Gruyère on top (I had run out of cheddar, as you do). 

The previous night it was pumpkin soup. Both soups were enriched with rinds of whatever cheese was in the fridge. I also have a lot of apples this year. Very happily we like apples. And cheese, which goes well with apples.  

So the report that Belton Farms is investing in more cheese cutting and packing is good news. I for one am now prone to picking up a package of grated or sliced cheese if I’m in a hurry, and am always happy to have some speciality and regional cheeses to add to a dish (Belton’s vintage Red Leicester is seriously tasty). It’s a win for both the producer and my own cheese eating tendencies. 

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