There is nothing more satisfying to cooks and diners alike than having a menu that carefully showcases seasonal food. Here are our favourite January staples:
It does seem strange that such a sweet, tangy and bright fruit comes into its own in one of the coldest, greyest and most austere months of the European winter. The cold nights that follow warm, Mediterranean winter days – (blood oranges grow mainly in the southern regions of Italy) is what creates furiously vivid redness within the fruit.
Blood oranges have a short season, but savvy chefs can get a whole lot out of them. One of our favourite recipes is this salad of burrata and blood orange from Francesco Mazzei’s beautiful, brilliant book
Recipes From Southern Italy
Neither an artichoke or from Jerusalem, these are actually a type of sunflower with a dense vegetable root. They taste sweet and are particularly great mashed with lashings of butter and a grind of pepper. However, our pick is this warming soup soup by Diana Henry:
As its name suggests, this is where the fruit has been grown out of season, inside dark pots – subject to both freezing and then warm temperatures. The result of the January harvest is a slim, bright pink stem that is usually a little sweeter and more delicate when it comes to taste. Use it in crumbles like this magical deconstruction by Jackson Boxer.