For me, Autumn is the most inspirational time of the year. Inspiration in fixing up my home, inspiration in my personal life, and inspiration in the kitchen.
I think that maybe cooking inspiration comes from actually wanting to eat cooked foods again. In summer, I don’t cook much. A big, fat bowl of watermelon for me is a delicious meal. Strawberries? Yep, a big, fat bowl of those will put a smile on me li’l face, too. A tossed salad? Absolutely gourmet. But, just about the time of the autumnal equinox I start inhabiting the kitchen again, looking for warm, comforting, filling food.
Autumnal equinox. That’s a mouthful of syllables. Six syllables in two words. Then again, the word “inspirational” (7th word, 1st paragraph) is five syllables in only one word. Nevertheless, I had to use the phrase “autumnal equinox” because it made the sentence read more expressively. If I had written “about September 22 I start inhabiting the kitchen…”, it would have made for a ridiculous sentence. I suppose I could have said “about mid September when the sun hangs lower in the sky, the trees are painted with colors of gold and brilliant shades of red and orange, and the days begin and end with wearing warm sweaters, I once again return to the comfort of my kitchen…”. Wow. That would have made a beautifully expressive sentence. Long, but beautifully expressive.
So, anyway, in the Fall I like to start cooking again. (Ha! A whole sentence with only 15 syllables.) I think that the foods available at this time of year are as beautiful as the colors on the trees and they invite creativity. I was seriously in the mood for a pork roast this past Sunday and I wanted a smoky sweet sauce with which to dress it.
The process of developing the sauce, and it was a process, began with bacon. After the bacon I added some orange marmalade. Then, I had to stop and think, “now what?”.
Okay, now what?
A tangy Granny Smith apple, all chopped up in small pieces.
At this point I took out all of my “sweet” spices and started sniffing each one. Most of them seemed like they would taste perfect with the sauce. Shoot. How much of each? That’s always a dilemma. But, low and behold, I picked up the pumpkin spice, took a whiff, and eagerly looked at the side of the bottle to read the contents. Yeppers, it was all of the spices that I had decided would taste great with the glaze rolled into one simple mixture. Well, that was easy. With the addition of a little apple cider and a bit of salt and brown sugar, I was good to go. Per. fec. tion.