Miserable about the fact that summer is over? It’s nothing that a honking great bowl of buttery mash can’t fix
Mash in all its forms
Cheesy mash, garlic mash, horseradish mash, mash and gravy, colcannon, with crème fraîche, with truffle, with mustard, with nutmeg, with a log-burning fire and with a nice cup of tea – there are hundreds of ways to enjoy mashed potato and we intend to work our way through every single last one of them.
French onion soup
Eating French onion soup in all its deep, rich, salty, comforting glory feels like an abomination in the sweltering (who are we kidding?) summer months, but during autumn? That just makes all different kinds of sense. Breton stripes optional.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that sticky toffee pudding is the greatest dessert on the planet, especially when liberally doused in custard. You might feel slovenly enjoying a sticky toffee pudding while your more demure friends ‘indulge’ in lemon sorbets during the summer months, but when autumn arrives you can dive head first into a steaming bowl of steamed pudding knowing everything is as it should be in the world.
Coq au vin
Winey, chickeny, bacon gloriousness. With more mashed potato. Enough said.
Lancashire hot pot
Lancashire hot pot is almost unparalleled in its ability to soothe. Not only is it bound up with sleepy, old-world nostalgia – Lancashire locals used to throw everything into a single pot to slow-cook while they were at work – but could there be anything more comforting than coming home on a crisp autumn day to layers of soft potatoes and slow-cooked lamb? We don't think so.
There is nothing, we repeat, nothing that can warm the cockles of your heart faster than the liberal application of hot chocolate. The ultimate winter warmer.
Dumplings cuddle you from the inside out. They may be on the slightly stodgy end of the spectrum, but therein lies their true appeal. Best eaten with a hearty stew while sitting under a blanket in front of some kind of period drama on the TV. Red wine optional/not really all that optional.
Speaking of stew, the Irish variety is unbeatable. And, no, it’s not just because I’m Irish. At all.
Mac and cheese has taken on almost mythical status in some corners of the internet and is thought of by many as the ultimate comfort food. With temperatures dropping and rain threatening to turn Oxford Street into London’s second biggest river, we’ll take all the comfort we can get.
Northern Italy’s stalwart dish for the colder months was, long ago, adopted into UK’s culinary psyche. One bite is enough to conjure up memories of mum’s home cooking and one big lasagne is more than enough to feed a crowd with leftovers to spare. A bonus when it’s too cold to venture out of your house and go to the shops.
Yes, there are beans and yes, they’re baked, but this French classic is about as far away from baked beans as it’s possible to get. Rich and hearty with duck confit, pork rind, smoked streaky bacon and garlicky sausages, this is French slow cooking at its most indulgent.
Liked this? Then try these:
- Lorraine Pascale on cheese, comfort food and taking a break
- 7 cheese on toast game-changers
- 7 slow-cooker stews to beat the January blues
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