In season: Autumn

Lettuce

The summer heat followed by the heavy rain and humidity took its toll on lots of local lettuce crops, which meant lettuce was a little scarce at the markets for a while, but farmers were quick to replant and are now harvesting lots of lovely leafy greens for your salads, sandwiches, soups juices and other meals. To maximise their life in your fridge, store in an airtight container. Find lettuce and other leafy greens at Glenyce Creighton Organics, Organic Forrest, and Summit Organics.

Fennel

Fennel’s delicate, aniseed flavour is a beautiful complement to fish, pork and chicken. You can use slivers of fennel raw and crunchy in coleslaw and salads, or cut bulbs in half and roast with some olive oil until sweet and tender to serve as a side dish or in pasta. Preparing fennel is a bit like you’d prepare an onion form the garden –  trim first – cut the stalks from the top of the bulb, then remove any tough outer layers. Don’t waste the trimmed parts – the fronds can be used as a garnish for soups, stews, and pasta and the stalks in stocks. Find fennel at Jumping Red Ant, Everest Farm and Summit Organics.

Pumpkin 

Pumpkin is in its prime in Autumn and there is plenty at the farmers markets. Great in soups, roasted in salads, stir fries, curries, lasagne or try it in or baked goods like pumpkin bread. Don’t throw away the seeds either – give them a quick rinse and rub off as much stringy pumpkin bits as possible, dry on a tea towel, then toss in a little olive oil and salt and roast at 150 for about 20 minutes for a yummy, healthy snack.

Also in season: Apples (new season), avocadoes (new season), bananas, basil, beetroot, capsicum, carrots, cucumber, dragonfruit, garlic, ginger, green beans, lime, macadamias, mango, mushrooms, nectarines, papaya, pecans, plums, rockmelon, sweet corn, sweet potato, tomato, watermelon, zucchini

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