All posts filed under: Food

Food

The other yummy things at Christmas – recipes by Gary O’Hanlon

The roasties, the gravy, the cranberry sauce, the lovely sides and extra things that adorn the plates and fill the fridge and presses. One of my favourite things about eating at Christmas are the extras. I asked Chef Gary O’Hanlon from Longford’s Viewmount House (which recently became part of the Blue Book) for some recipes for some extra special festive extras. The delicious things that gild the Christmas lily. Here he shares his recipes for roast potatoes, brussels sprouts (that even impressed his in-laws) and a cracking recipe for an Espresso Martini. Goose Fat, Polenta Crusted Maris Piper Roasties Maris pipers hands-down make the best chips, best baked potatoes and the best roasties. Throw in the flavour from goose fat, herbs and the texture from the polenta and you’ll never make a roastie any other way again. Ingredients 10 peeled maris piper potatoes 4tbspn fine polents 200ml goose fat 4 sprigs of thyme 3 sprigs of rosemary Salt and pepper Method Cover the potatoes with cold water, season well, and boil gently until just cooked …

Review – The Village Tavern, Mountcharles, Co. Donegal

Falling in love again with your home county can often happen when you least expect it. Donegal is the tattoo on my heart and the passport I am proudest of. I am in another flush of love with this special, mythical, weather battered, gorgeous and cheeky county at the minute.  I dragged my family out while visiting home this weekend to try The Village Tavern in Mountcharles which is just five minutes from Donegal Town. I had heard very, very good things about the food here, so not even a visit from that rascal Desmond was going to stand in the way. One two-hour journey from my homeplace in north-west Donegal later, it was certainly worth it. Signature Seafood Tasting Board Tucked into the back of an unassuming pub in the main village of Mountcharles, lies a roaring fire and delicious food that far surpasses any pre-conceptions of rural pub grub. The whole menu was like George Clooney had just married seafood and was showing her off to the world. The starters were clever and …

Recipe – Michael O’Meara – Monkfish poached in saffron nage with langoustines, cockles and mussels

Michael O’Meara, the talent behind Oscar’s Seafood Bistro in Galway, recently published one of the finest seafood cookery books I have seen, an absolute must for any seafood lover’s Santa list this year. ‘SEA Gastronomy Fish & Shellfish of the North Atlantic’ is a beautiful journey through the precious bounty we have surrounding our island with everything you could possily dream of from the sea. Here he shares this very tasty, and very pretty monkfish recipe. Monkfish poached in saffron nage with langoustines, cockles and mussels  Serves 1 170g monkfish fillet, fully trimmed and cut into bite size pieces 5 fresh cockles in the shell 5 fresh mussels in the shell 3 langoustines, medium-sized 75ml turbot stock or fish stock 40ml white wine 40ml fresh cream 40g kale, lightly blanched and refreshed 40g spinach, lightly blanched and refreshed 10g samphire 4 sugar snap peas, lightly blanched and refreshed 1g powdered saffron 25g butter Sea salt and black pepper, freshly ground, to season The French term à la nage translates as ‘while swimming’ and refers to …

Irish Christmas Cheeseboard

Christmas can mean a lot of things, but for me it is all about cheese. As one of the great loves of my life all year round, I love that everyone else gets equally besotted with it at Christmas time. Thankfully we have shaken off our Galtee shackles, and fled the Easi-Single prison cell to embrace the delicious cheese from our wonderful Irish cheese makers. We have the best dairy in the world and superb goats and sheep’s milk cheeses that will make your Christmas cheeseboard sing. Every Irish cheese is special because it has a story; the producer, where it comes from and how it is made. As the late David Tiernan who made the glorious Glebe Brethan once told me, ‘You have to be a bit cracked to make cheese, but sure that’s the magic of it.’ This Christmas, do try Irish cheeses if you are entertaining, or even if you fancy just having a party for one with a glass of something by the fire. You will not be disappointed. Trying to …

The Glasgowist features The Mc Bride Guide

A dear friend Paul Trainer left our Irish shores for his native Scotland and his latest Guide to the great and good of Glasgow is an absolute must for locals and if you are visiting. He kindly featured me on the website glasgowist.com By Paul Trainer Billy Connolly once said “if you ever want your flagging spirits lifted, go to Ireland” and thousands of Scots take that advice every year, hopping on one of the steady stream of cheap flights linking the two countries or taking the ferry. There is a particular connection between Donegal on Ireland’s wild west coast and Glasgow with cultural and work related links dating back generations. Caitriona McBride chronicles the finer things on the Emerald Isle at the McBride Guide. We caught up with her to talk about Irish restaurants, family ties and cheese. What was the idea behind the McBride Guide? It’s a celebration of the best of Irish food and beautiful things. I think we are living in one of the most exciting eras for Irish cuisine so …