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A passion for pommes

Apples are one of my favourite fruits - they're so versatile. 

I often pair caramelised apples with fatty meats like pork to offset its richness and as the temperature starts to drop and autumn sets in, I love to make a hot apple pie. 

There are actually more than 7,000 varieties of apples with many grown right here in Britain. Sadly, only around 12 varieties are widely available in supermarkets and the majority of these are imported. 

I'd like to encourage you to celebrate the British apple with this great recipe for Waldorf salad with grilled mackerel. A great lunch or light dinner, the meaty mackerel really complements the sweet and sharp notes of the apple. 

You'll need eating apples for this dish - British apples are available throughout the year but are at their best from September to November so keep your eyes peeled in the coming weeks. 

Shop bought mayonnaise works perfectly well for this recipe but if you really want to impress, make your own! Combine eye yolks, vinegar, mustard and sugar in a food processor with a sprinkle of salt and pepper. With the motor running, gradually add sunflower oil until the mixture is smooth and thick. Add creme fraiche and a few drops of cold water, blend until combined and chill in the fridge while you prepere the salad and mackerel. 

Toast walnut halves in a frying pan for 3-4 minutes and allow to cool. Finely slice celery, setting aside the leaves to be used later, Combine the celery with sliced apply and halved grapes and toss in lemon juice. Add mayonnaise, the walnut halves and celery leaves and mix well. 

Lightly coat the fresh mackerel in a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, chopped parsley, salt and pepper. Transfer to a baking tray skin side up and grill for 2 - 3 minutes. Serve the grilled mackerel alongside the Waldorf salad with a slice of lemon and there you have it - a perfect trans-seasonal dish that will have your taste buds tingling. 

Chef's Tip

Store your apples in a perforated bag in the fridge to keep them fresh. To store apples for a longer period of time, wrap each one in a newspaper and store in a single layer in a wooden box. Keep the box somewhere dark and cool and make sure you check each one regularly to make sure it hasn't gone rotten as just one rotten apple will spoil the entire box.