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Last supper

Friday, 29 September, 2017 0 Comments

Catalonia is a geographically diverse region and it produces a variety of high-quality seafood, meat, poultry, game, fruit, vegetables and wine. These are often served in odd combinations: a main course known as mar i muntanya can contain meat and seafood, rice, fruit and nuts. Catalonia’s 10 denominated wine regions focus mostly on Cariñena or Samsó among red grapes, and Garnacha Blanca and ­Xarel-lo among white grapes.


Better the butcher than the meat

Saturday, 22 July, 2017 0 Comments

“Either you get eaten by a wolf today or else the shepherd saves you from the wolf so he can sell you to the butcher tomorrow.” — Ogden Nash


Low carbs at the Fish & Chip Bar in Cardiff

Wednesday, 12 July, 2017 0 Comments

The do like their bars in Wales. And not just for pints of Brains and Tiny Rebel. At the Fish & Chip Bar in Cardiff the emphasis is on low carbs. Just one chip!


The Queen who dare not speak her name

Friday, 16 June, 2017 0 Comments

British Queens arrive on the shelves just after the first early potatoes, so they are often referred to as “second early” potatoes. Floury and delicious, they are suitable for steaming, boiling, roasting and chipping and are said to be one of the best for mashing.

The British Queen was created by Archibald Findlay (1841 – 1921), a prolific potato breeder, who also created the Majestic and Up-to-Date varieties. Findlay was a Scot who moved to potato-growing country in Lincolnshire in England to follow his passion. In Ireland, his British Queens are marketed as “Queens”, due to the absurd nationalism that has corroded language and corrupted thinking.

Northern spuds

“Potatoes are one of the last things to disappear, in times of war, which is probably why they should not be forgotten in times of peace.” — M.F.K. Fisher, How to Cook a Wolf

Plate and palate and photography

Monday, 8 May, 2017 0 Comments

The food photographer Eric Wolfinger is a cook who has found his vocation via the camera lens. His global travels have led to the creation of Beyond the Plate, a SmugMug documentary for foodies and photographers.

Irish food truck

Thursday, 20 April, 2017 0 Comments

Irish food truck

Basics: fish and chips = iasc agus sceallóga

Example: “We ordered fish and chips to go.” (D’ordaíomar iasc agus sceallóga le tabhairt linn.)

Unboxing Millie’s Easter cake

Sunday, 16 April, 2017 0 Comments

Great neighbour, great friend, great baker! Happy Easter! Beannachtaí na Cásca! Boa Páscoa! Frohe Ostern! ¡Felices Pascuas! Buona Pasqua! Joyeuses Pâques!

Cake 1

Cake 2

Cake 3

Cake 4


Thursday, 30 March, 2017 0 Comments

Blackberry panacotta, raspberry, pistachio and blackberry sorbet with biscotti at the Fern House Café in Kilmacanogue, County Wicklow.


“As one who appreciated the tragic side of eating, it seemed to him that anything other than fruit for dessert implied a reprehensible frivolity, and cakes in particular ended up annihilating the flavour of quiet sadness that must be allowed to linger at the end of a great culinary performance.” — Manuel Vázquez Montalbán, La Soledad Del Manager


Tuesday, 28 March, 2017 0 Comments

Roast filled of cod, fennel, spinach, beurre noisette and almonds at the Fern House Café in Kilmacanogue, County Wicklow. Eaten slowly and remembered for a long time.


“Consider the subtleness of the sea; how its most dreaded creatures glide under water, unapparent for the most part, and treacherously hidden beneath the loveliest tints of azure.” — Herman Melville, Moby-Dick; or, The Whale


Sunday, 26 March, 2017 0 Comments

Pan-fried scallops, curried parsnip pureé, crispy capers, raisins and poached apples at the Fern House Café in Kilmacanogue, County Wicklow. Big thanks to Noel, Patricia, Ann and Brian. Great people, great food, great night.


Bitter-sweet cake, in memory of AA Gill

Sunday, 11 December, 2016 1 Comment

The great Sunday Times writer and critic, AA Gill, died at Charing Cross Hospital in London yesterday, shocking the journalistic community with the suddenness of his death. Only a few days earlier, Gill, 62, had finished what turned out to be his last article — an account of his search for a treatment that might have extended his life. His death robs British journalism of one of its most individual voices.

AA Gill was wholly politically incorrect and he delighted friend and foe with his observations: “There are many wonderful things about Egypt, but none of them is gastronomic. An Egyptian restaurant belongs on the same street as a Fijian ballet school, a Ukrainian tailor and a Nigerian interior decorator.” RIP.

AA Gill cake with citrus

“Death lends everything a metaphoric imperative. Mundane objects become fetishes when the departed no longer need them, and breakfast conversations grow runic and wise from behind the shadows.” — A.A. Gill