Autumn is my favourite season of the year. Perhaps it is because, living in Canada, the seasons go from winter to summer to winter, with only a little bit of spring or autumn in between. Autumn seems to be such a short season here, and almost all of it is spent waiting for and preparing for the snow.
It is always so glazed over. The stores already have their christmas merchandise in. Autumn is like the middle child, forgotten in the rush. Perhaps that is why it is my favourite season. Because people rarely stop to notice the little things, the little changes that come with autumn, and because before they know it winter will have arrived.
I love to see the changing colours of the leaves, the cool of the evening, when it is still warm enough to go out for a midnight stroll without a jacket, but not so hot you feel as though you are stepping into a sauna as you do in summer. I love the crab apples that start to fall from the trees, I can spend hours gathering a bunch to bring home for some baking.
Here, you never quite know how long autumn will last. Snow can arrive anytime between the end of September and halloween. And because it can be so brief, that is why it is so magical.
October brings with it a time of celebration: thanksgiving, halloween, my birthday. Time to spend with friends and family and just enjoy before the stress of the christmas season hits.
The Canada geese start to leave, migrating for warmer climates, and new wildlife start to emerge. The baby deer have antlers now, and you can still spot them in the city as you walk around at night.
Autumn is beautiful.
Autumn also brings with it the cooler air, the lower temperatures, and the joy of fresh pumpkins to roast. And best of all, it brings with it my favourite carrot soup.
During the summer it is too hot for a soup, something that simmers away on the stove for a couple of hours if not my idea of fun when it is 50C+ outside, and pretty close to that inside. But on an autumn evening, a soup is a welcome delight.
When making soup, I like to use two different pans. One for the base vegetables and stock, and one for the extra bits.
1lb carrots, peeled and sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 cup shallots
1 turnip, sliced
1 tbl paprika
1 tbl vegetable spice
salt and pepper to taste
In a saucepan, bring salted water to a boil. Add 3/4 of the carrots and 1/2 of your turnip. Boil until soft.
In a skillet, saute the onion, shallots, and the rest of the carrots and turnips. Add the spices and salt and pepper. I generally cook them until the onions and shallots are starting to brown.
First put the boiled carrot mixture into the blender with a cup of the water you used to boil it in. Puree until smooth. Leave 2 cups worth of the carrot, turnip mixture out and set it to one side.
Now add the sauteed onion mixture to the blender with another cup of water and puree until smooth.
Add the mixture back into a saucepan and add the reserved veggies. Serve.