In this gorgeous hot weather, can you imagine eating a steaming piece of rare beef stacked high on rosti potatoes covered in a rich jus? Or how about a glass of hot, spiced mulled wine? A big comforting chocolate molten pudding? No? Many of the tastings I am doing this week are for winter wedding menus, and I’ve had one or two panics from couples who reflect that their perfect choice just ‘tastes wrong’.
Food brings out our most natural instincts as human beings. Eating strawberries in December or heavy food in June feels as strange and incongruent as wearing a scarf hat and gloves to the beach or a bikini to your Christmas party. My advice is to leave your tasting until six weeks before your big day, then you will truly get the full flavour of your day.
Work with your caterer around the British food seasons and you will guarantee a delicious, plentiful and perfect menu that fits the weather and the instincts of your guests. Poor choices on the other hand will cost you in quality, carbon and cash.
Here is a sense of which foods are available/best in which months:
January / February / March
Yorkshire rhubarb, Whitstable oysters, artichokes, pears, pomegranate…
April / May / June
Jersey Royals, tomatoes, Winchester watercress, lettuce, asparagus, elderflower…
July / August / September
Peas, courgettes, Kentish strawberries, fine beans, figs, raspberries, plums…
October / November / December
Butternut squash, wild forest mushrooms, blackberries, Somerset apples…
Most meat and fish are farmed and, aside from game, available all year round. However, richer meats such as venison, game and duck are better for winter (naturally), and light, delicate seafood such as sea bass, monkfish and scallops are better appreciated during the hotter months.
Guest post by Julie Gray of Bovingdons
Image from Bovingdons