Tag Archives: autumn

A Visit to Bateman’s – Rudyard Kipling’s home

We spent our October half term holiday in a static caravan in Sussex. Apart from one day, the weather was fantastic, so we got out for plenty of trips. One day we visited Bateman’s, the former home of Rudyard Kipling, author of The Jungle Book, now owned by The National Trust.

The gardens were full of beautiful Autumn colour and the boys enjoyed taking part in the spooky Halloween trail. My best bit of Autumn is going for lovely Autumnal walks and seeing the trees in their colourful Autumn glory. Even the flowers were still colourful to add to my pleasure, as captured in my photograph.

Bateman's

Beautiful Autumn colours

The spooky trail was well thought out. When you found each clue, there were different challenges for older and younger children as to what to draw on their spooky picture. So son1 did the older version whilst son2 did the younger version. And great for learning map reading skills too. They both got a medal at the end of the trail.Bateman's

We also did a whistlestop tour round the inside of the house and mill. Had to be quick as son1 refused to go inside.  No I don’t know why he wouldn’t. And the weather was glorious – end of October and we were able to sit outside the tearoom for lunch. A nice browse round the shop too and I couldn’t resist buying some cheap pear windfalls, which I stewed for dessert that evening. A very basic pudding but tasty as I hadn’t bothered equipping the caravan kitchen with anything like flour. Pear trees weren’t the only crop as I spotted some chillis in a greenhouse.

And I loved how each bench outside had a pocket at each end containing a different laminated fact sheet. From one I rediscovered a poem of Kipling’s that I probably hadn’t heard since I was a child and read it to my boys. This was “I keep six honest serving men”and you may read it here.

I would love to hear what is your best bit of Autumn?

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Center Parcs November Challenge: Autumn Poems

Tots100 and Center Parcs have challenged bloggers and their families to write an Autumn poem.  See this webpage for more details, where Center Parcs Whinfell Forest’s resident nature expert and Conservation Ranger, Emma Tapp has shared her top tips.  My favourite of Emma’s tips is number 1 which says
Be inspired by your surroundings – Observe as the leaves change colour from green to red and let the beautiful burnt oranges get the creative juices flowing, what does it look like and remind you of?

Son1 has taken on this challenge for our family and has written and decorated his Autumn poem.

Son1's Autumn Poem

Son1’s Autumn Poem

Son1 with his Autumn poem

Son1 with his Autumn poem

This is my entry to the Center Parcs and Tots 100 November challenge. If I’m chosen, I would like to visit Longleat Forest.

Seasonal Recipes – Apple Bread and Butter Pudding

I usually love Autumn, going for woodland walks in our wellies, scrunching through the leaves.  Sadly we’ve only managed one short walk so far this season, as son1 isn’t really feeling upto much walking due to his leukaemia.

However at least one thing remains constant, being able to cook lovely warm nourishing food with some of the seasonal produce available at this time of year.  I blogged last week about my pumpkin soup.  But already pumpkins seem to have disappeared from the shelves at the shops.  What a shame, there are so many great pumpkin recipes.  We don’t just want pumpkins to make jack o’ lanterns, although that is great fun.  Pumpkins won’t have vanished from the shelves in the US, with pumpkin pie being traditional Thanksgiving fare, so where have they gone here?  I hope they haven’t been thrown away just to make room for all the Christmas lines.

Anyhow at least some seasonal food like apples and plums don’t disappear.  Our  old house had several fruit trees, so I used to make lots of puddings at this time of year.  I still do, but now I have to rely on buying my fruit or gifts from others with a fruit glut.  So having been given a bag of apples, I thought that I would share an unusual apple recipe on my blog today that I originally posted on Gourmandize.

Apple Bread and Butter Pudding

This recipe is my personal creation. It is a fruity variant on the traditional Bread and Butter Pudding. Served hot, delicious with custard or cream. Serves 4.

Ingredients

25g butter
200g cooking apples,
100g white bread
50g currants
1 tsp cinnamon powder
300ml milk
2 eggs
25g sugar

Method

Grease a pie dish with butter.
Spread each slice of bread with butter, then cut into triangles or fingers. I leave the crusts on the bread to avoid wastage, but cut them off if you prefer.
Peel, core and slice the apples.
Arrange a layer of half the bread, buttered-side up, in the bottom of the dish.
Then add a layer of all the apple and currants. Sprinkle with the cinnamon.
Then finish with a layer of remaining bread, then put to one side.
Gently warm the milk over a low heat. Don’t let it boil.
Crack the eggs into a bowl, add three quarters of the sugar and whisk.
Add the warm milk to the egg mixture and stir, then pour over the prepared bread and apple. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar and leave to stand for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180 deg C.
Place the dish into the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the custard has set and the top is golden-brown.

Arrange half the bread in bottom of dish

Arrange half the bread in bottom of dish

Add apple and currants. Sprinkle with cinnamon

Add apple and currants. Sprinkle with cinnamon

Add remaining bread

Add remaining bread

Add egg mixture and sugar, leave to stand

Add egg mixture and sugar, leave to stand

Bake until custard has set and top is golden-brown

Bake until custard has set and top is golden-brown

This post is my entry to the 1st Edition of the Bloggers cooking competition from Tiendeo of “Seasonal Recipes”.  Be quick if you want to enter too, as it closes tomorrow.

Footnote – Tiendeo competition has now been extended to 15 Nov.

Link up your recipe of the week