Last weekend we had a go at picking some apples - as you can see! The weather was glorious on Sunday, and we all mucked in.
If there's one thing that makes my heart sing at the end of summer it's the apple harvest. We usually have loads of apples. Our trees are heritage varieties from Devon, where the emphasis is on working apples for cider or cooking, rather than sweet dessert types.
And so I'm busy this morning wrapping some in newspaper to store in a box in the basement until we're ready to use them. The tart cooking apple varieties usually keep quite well in a cool, dry place, out of sunlight. With any luck they'll keep us going until the New Year. I carefully choose the apples for storing in this way, taking care not to include any that look like they've got any bruises or injuries that are liable to rot.
I also share the bounty with family and friends. I'll bottle some in Kilner jars with a sweet, spicy syrup that will preserve them beyond the New Year for using in pies and crumbles. We'll be eating apple-centric desserts from now until the troops start to protest, and my troops tend to have a very high boredom threshold when it comes to food. Then there's my zingy Christmas Chutney that has to be made now so that it can mature and grow suitably rich and unctuous before big day. I know, I know: kill me now for mentioning the dreaded C-word in September! And I've also got it in my head to have a go at making some apple butter.
I'll keep you posted on how I get on. I've got my work cut out for me over the next few days ... .
All the best for now,