In Season

Eat British produce when it’s at its best.

Follow our guides to what’s in season with exclusive recipes and features from the country’s top food writers...

Sweetcorn

Sweetcorn

Exploding with sweet flavour, the fleshy golden kernels are at their best just-picked. Eat simply with melted butter or add to nearly any dish, says Clarissa Hyman

The word ‘corn’ has confused many over the centuries. Zea mays has been the staple grain of Central America and Mexico for at least 3,000 years, and was the only cereal of the Aztec, Maya and Inca civilisations. Laden with myth and mystery, the plants were a central part of those cultures, the kernels ground for bread or gnawed fresh off the cob. Once introduced to Europe, the plant was dubbed ‘corn’ in English, a generic term used for any cereal grain such as wheat. At first the British, French and Dutch called it ‘Turkish’ corn, the Turks named it ‘Egyptian’ corn, and the Egyptians contrarily termed it ‘Syrian’ corn. In the Americas, the labelling was more specific and from the 17th century the plants were called ‘maize’ or ‘Indian corn’. Wild maize no longer exists but although there is only one species of cultivated maize, there are innumerable

  • Jerusalem artichokes

    January produce

    Scallops, kale, parsnips, Jerusalem artichokes, chicory and pomegranates

  • Swede

    February produce

    Cauliflowers, swede, oysters, lemons and passion fruit

  • Purple sprouting broccoli

    March produce

    Purple sprouting broccoli, cabbage and oranges

  • Spring Onions

    April produce

    Spring herbs, spinach, watercress, shallots, blood oranges and rhubarb

  • Rocket

    May produce

    French beans, asparagus, Jersey royals, peas, spinach and rocket

  • Gooseberries

    June produce

    Samphire, broad beans, gooseberries, cherries, strawberries and honey

  • Radish

    July produce

    Courgettes, cucumbers and artichokes

  • Peppers

    August produce

    Aubergines, peppers, tomatoes and apricots

  • Peppers

    September produce

    Peppers and figs

  • Fennel

    October produce

    Wild mushrooms, onions, sweet potatoes, fennel, apples and plums

  • Carrots

    November produce

    Savoy cabbage, pumpkins, celeriac, carrots, cavolo nero, potatoes, truffles and dates

  • Chestnuts

    December produce

    Brussels sprouts, nuts, walnuts, chestnuts and cranberries

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