Showing posts with label Taste of the Week. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Taste of the Week. Show all posts

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Taste of the Week. Tender Stem Broccoli, Dockland Style

Taste of the Week
Tender Stem Broccoli Dockland Style
Not often we make a restaurant dish our Taste of the Week but this moreish  “Bite” from the newly opened Dockland is a worthy exception. Very impressed when I bit into this one on a recent visit to Beth and Harold’s makeover of what was previously their Club Brasserie.

Starters here range from small bites, all around the fiver, all the way to bigger ones at eleven and thirteen euro. The full description for this one is Chargrilled Tender Stem Broccoli Caesar Salad, toasted hazelnut and Parmesan Crumble. Terrific tastes, fresh flavours and crunchy textures. A bite of delight, all for a fiver and Taste of the Week.

See full review of visit here.

City Quarter
Lapps Quay
T: 353 (0)21 427 3987

See full post on Dockland visit here

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Taste of the Week. Carrigaline Dillisk Cheese

Taste of the Week
Carrigaline Dillisk Cheese

I’ve long been an admirer of the cheese made by the O’Farrell family at the Carrigaline Cheese Company and I’m wondering now why I took so long to make their Dillisk Seaweed Cheese my Taste of the Week as they have been producing it for over five years. 

The Dillisk seaweed from the Atlantic combines with the milk from the local limestone soil to give the cheese a “must taste” combination. The creamy milk and the subtle tang of the ocean combine superbly.

Sometimes, when an extra like this is added to cheese, you can hardly see it, barely taste it. But here the Dillisk is easily seen, generous bits of it throughout the disc of cheese. Well worth a try.

Carrigaline cheeses are widely available and you can see the list of stockists here 

The Rock
County Cork
Tel: (021) 437 2856

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Taste of the Week. Cantabrian Anchovies from the Real Olive Co.

The Deli's on the right!

Taste of the Week
Anchovies from the Real Olive Co.

If ever you are lucky enough to be in Getaria, on the Basque coast between San Sebastian and Bilbao, be sure and call to the Salanort deli and get your hands on the local anchovies. I thought that was my only way of getting these beauties but I found out the other day, they are much closer to home and are my Taste of the Week.

All you have to do is to call to the Real Olive Stall in the English Market and get yourself a few tins of the Cantabrian anchovies caught off Getaria and other nearby towns, in particular the can marked Cantara. The little fish are caught and the treated in a traditional way and are of the very finest quality.
Anchovies with grilled onions at Nerua in Bilbao's Guggenheim

What is so different about these anchovies? Well for a start, they are cold water as distinct from the anchovies of the warmer Med. But, maybe because of that, they have a fantastic flavour, pleasant and mild (not as salty as those from the Med) and texture is almost creamy. By the way, they have some delicious sardines at the Real Olive as well - I like the ones in the spicy tomato sauce but there is quite a choice and I'm told that those in Extra Virgin Olive Oil are amazing!
This is the tin you want!

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Taste of the Week. Skellig Milk Chocolate Dipped Marshmallows

Taste of the Week
Skellig Milk Chocolate Dipped Marshmallows

Wasn't expecting too much from this pack but, with Skellig Chocolates involved, I should have known better. It is a delightful delicious combination and our current Taste of the Week.

By the way, the chocolate is the main ingredient here at 83%, smothering the marshmallow at 17%. You bite in through the chocolate cover on the irregular sized treats and find the soft tasty marshmallow in the middle. It is quality all the way from the gorgeous chocolate to the soft yielding marshmallow, a terrific flavoursome packet. 

They go well together as I found out when I visited last year and enjoyed a hot chocolate in their cafe, a café with a splendid view out to the magic islands, the hot chocolate topped with a generous helping of marshmallow!

The Glen
County Kerry

066 9479119

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Taste of the Week. Gubbeen Marinated Pork Ribs

Taste of the Week
Gubbeen Marinated Pork Ribs

The Gubbeen stall at the Thursday Mahon Point Farmers Market is always worth a call. Recently, we got a wheel of their delicious cheese, an Irish classic. Fingal Ferguson’s smokehouse and charcuterie in general is always there in abundance and we spotted these ribs there, now our Taste of the Week.
We got enough for three, maybe four, for a tenner. And advice on how to cook them: low and slow, with a tray of water underneath to keep them moist during the process.

The Blog Chef followed the instructions, added a simple salad, and it proved to be a delicious flavoursome main course. Thank you Fingal and company!

And, of course, we had some of the cheese later on.

Gubbeen House,
Schull, Co. Cork.
Cheese Telephone:
00 353 (0)28 28231
Smokehouse Telephone:
00 353 (0)28 27824

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Taste of the Week. Wild Irish Hot Crabapple Pot

Taste of the Week
Wild Irish Hot Crabapple Pot

This versatile Crabapple jelly with a Chilli kick is brought to you by the Wild Irish Foragers & Preservers  from Millhouse Farm in County Offaly. Our Taste of the Week is just one of a series of their marvellous products. 

This is delicious with lamb, pork and cold meats. You may add it to sauces or enjoy it with ice-cream. Put it on your pancakes as a spread.

I did try it with lamb and it worked a treat. Cheese is not mentioned on the jar but it did go very well with St Tola’s Goats Ash Roll, even better with the original Gubbeen.


Wild Irish Foragers & Preservers
Millhouse Farm
Co. Offaly

085 - 7476761

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Taste of the Week. St Tola Ash Roll

Taste of the Week

St Tola Ash Roll
I know this has been mentioned here before but it is such a superb product that I just couldn't resist putting it up again. Bought half a roll recently in Iago (Princes Street, Cork) and enjoyed it no end.

It is an amazingly creamy cheese from the tough fields of St Tola in County Clare. The cheese has been rolled in traditional food grade ash when fresh. The ash slows down the development and maturation of the cheese and after a few weeks of careful handling, an elegant, smooth textured and full flavoured cheese emerges.

Take your time as you savour the special flavour and that smooth creamy texture; you might even notice the slightly grittier texture of the ash. Enjoy it on its own or pair it with either of these two delicious Irish products: Killahora Orchards Rare Apple Ice Wine or the Hot Crabapple Pot (if you don’t fancy the heat - it is mild - then try their Elderflower and Crabapple Pot) by Wild Irish Foragers and Preserves.

Maurice Mills,
Co. Clare,
Ireland V95 XA9C.
GPS: 52.903140300  -9.178353600 

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Taste of the Week. Kinnegar’s Crossroads American Style IPA

Taste of the Week
Kinnegar’s Crossroads American Style IPA

Had a bit of an American IPA duel recently with Kinnegar's Crossroad and California’s Lagunitas (lag-goo-KNEE-tus) the protagonists, both bought from Bradley’s of Cork. 

Thanks to the US guys for the pronunciation guide. Their Indian Pale Ale was superb as was indeed their 12th of Never Pale Ale.

There were two rounds, both level going into the second. I had brought in one of Donegal diaspora for this one but my islander couldn't split them. 

That left it up to me and I gave the nod to the aromatic citrusy crisp Crossroads, our Taste of the Week, and its nicely bittered finish. Close-run thing tough. Might have to call for a replay! 

K2, Ballyraine Industrial Estate,

 Letterkenny, Co. Donegal

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Taste of the Week . Butter Shortbread by Cookies of Character

Taste of the Week
Butter Shortbread by Cookies of Character

The Cookies of Character stand at the Mahon Point Farmers market every Thursday is well worth a call and it was there that I found these delicious Butter Shortbread, with Pistachio and Cardamom, our current taste of the week.

This is a fragrant and unusual combination of flavours in a chunky all-butter shortbread. It is outstanding, a different level entirely to most of the imported shortbread. The Cardamom is ground and provides a mild flavour and pleasant aroma. The little flakes of Pistachio also play a part in the overall experience as the buttery biscuit dissolves on the palate. Hugely enjoyable.

I got a box at the stall, and a welcome smile, in Mahon for €2.50. Great value. And they have even better value in the bargain corner of the stand. Here, you can get a variety of tempting flavours for just €1.50.

The Cookies are produced by the Régale Biscuit Company in Dunmanway and are widely available. Check for stockists here

Dunmanway, Co. Cork

Tel: 023 88 95 1 55
Mob: 086 086 81 83, email

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Taste of the Week. Oriel Sea Salt

Taste of the Week
Oriel Sea Salt

Taste of the Week comes from County Louth and is the Oriel Kiln Dried Sea Salt. It’s Irish, it’s natural, nothing has been added. And it is top class.

 I’ve had the chance to sample the Oriel salts over the past six weeks or so and this particular one, free flowing and fine grained, has appeared on the table non-stop. This mineral rich sea salt has a powerfully smooth taste and allows you to use up to 25% less with no compromise on flavour. It has been endorsed by some of Ireland's top chefs, Ross Lewis of Chapter One among them.

This totally Irish salt has a deeper richer flavour yet is doesn't overpower your dish. Even if you add a little too much, it means more flavour, not saltier. Ed O’Donnell of O’Donnell Crisps: “..the taste profile of Oriel Sea Salt was supreme..”. 

It dissolves and disperses rapidly in recipes. No wonder the country’s chefs are praising it. The chefs will be also be happy with Oriel’s Whiskey Smoked Sea Salt. This has been smoked over Teeling Irish Whiskey freshly emptied 90 year old Nicaraguan Oak barrels to produce a “smokiness that is simply spectacular”. Read Joe McNamee’s hymn to it here.

The third product, all three are available in 250 gram tubs, is their Mineral Sea Salt Natural. This is slightly moist with a powder like grain. “For those who like to pinch.”

Whether you use the Oriel as a finishing or as an ingredient, you’ll be moving on up the flavour scale. It’s a little like changing from mainstream beer to craft - you’ll never go back!

Port Oriel, Clogherhead,
Drogheda, County Louth,
A92 V97C, Ireland.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Taste of the Week. Dark Chocolate Apple Crisp Thins

Taste of the Week
Christmas Special
Dark Chocolate Apple Crisp Thins

Lismore Food Company, who make these beauties, say that “Seven days without Chocolate makes one Weak“. I say seven days with chocolate makes my week.

These divine crisp apple thins, air dried and wrapped in the finest dark Belgian chocolate, are an epicurean delight. They have a delicious contrast between the richness of the chocolate and the tartness of the apple and are our Taste of the Week.

All week, that is. With the morning coffee, with the afternoon cuppa. And other occasions I won't mention in case someone is counting. Taste of the Week and very handy to have in the coming weeks. You might even consider dishing them out as presents. I didn’t! 
Stockists here.

The Summerhouse
Main Street
Co. Waterford.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Taste of the Week. Mezze Lavosh Flatbreads

Taste of the Week
Mezze Lavosh Flatbreads

These Mezze lavosh flatbreads are a wonderful treat for the festive season, versatile too. The spelt and seed lavosh flatbreads are great with hummus, brie or pate. Perfect for cheese boards, mezze platters or a treat with a glass of wine.

My favourite though, being rather lazy, was just to spoon on and spread some local Irish honey. Bingo!

Inspired by the Middle East, and made in Ireland by husband and wife Dvir Nusery and Nicola Crowley, they are our Taste of the Week. 

They are made in Waterford with extra virgin rapeseed oil from Wicklow, sea salt, wholemeal flours and no additives or preservatives. You are encouraged to: dip, dollop, spread the love!

Try also Ottolenghi's muhamara (red pepper and walnut dip) recipe:

You can find them at food festivals, Dungarvan farmers market, Ardkeen Stores & Supervalus. I bought mine, the seaweed version, in Bradley’s, North Main Street, Cork. The other flavours available are za'atar and spelt & seed.

More recipes here 

Monday, December 18, 2017

Taste of the Week. Christmas Special. The Nibbles Christmas Pudding

Taste of the Week. Christmas Special

The Nibbles Christmas Pudding

Once upon a time, Irish housewives made the Christmas pudding, some made three or four or more, in mid-summer. All windows and doors were thrown open and the steam drifted out, some aromas too, to the open air.

But then came the age of inconvenience and nobody was left at home to cook up the necessary battalions of puddings and now we rely more and more on providers. Some of those providers though are so much better than others and I found one last week who has served up my Taste of the Christmas Week.

Eleanor Leahy is the lady and Nibbles is the name of her Millstreet company; her puddings (and cakes, by the way) are available at farmers markets, at Nibbles Bakery and Café in Millstreet, and also in Roughty Foodie in the English Market where I got mine from Margo Ann.

The Nibbles pudding is not as dark as the traditional one but, packed with fruit, stout and whiskey too, it has the all the flavour you need and comes in a variety of sizes. Just add a slather of the Brandy Butter from Crossogue Preserves, also available from Margo Ann, and you have a festive treat that’s hard to beat.
The Nibbles Christmas Cake is pretty good too!

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Taste of the Week. Crossogue’s Loganberry Jam

Taste of the Week

Crossogue’s Loganberry Jam

Having been born and spent my early years in Kenya, I moved to Ireland to marry a wonderful Irish man and together we run the family farm Crossogue. Now 50 years of marriage later with six children and thirteen grand children, I am still here and have enjoyed the journey it has all taken me on!

That is briefly, very briefly, the story of Veronica of Crossogue Preserves. The preserves are a relatively recent addition to the farm, just over twenty two years. And they just get better and better as the flow of prizes and awards (sixty alone from Great Taste) underline.

Must say I'm not sure that their Loganberry Jam features among the prize-winners but it is a beauty. I got mine at the Roughty in the English Market and Margo Ann told go home now and try that out and then tell me it's not “the real thing”. I never had a doubt. It is top notch and our Taste of the Week.

And here’s a tip to get even extra out of it. Use it with cheese, with sheeps cheese in particular. I had this in mind in the market and bought a wedge of Vincenzo’s Pecorino (made in Toonsbridge by an Italian). Serve that with a dash of the loganberry and you have an even better taste of the week. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Taste of the Week. Mella’s Salted Caramel Fudge

Taste of the Week
Mella’s Salted Caramel Fudge

Lovely to meet up with Mella and her utterly delicious fudge at the recent Cork Kerry Food Fair in the City Hall. Lots of tastings going on and I got a few bars.

One was (note the past tense) the Salted Caramel Fudge, our Taste of the Week. 

This is a deeply caramel flavoured fudge combined with O’Neill’s Irish Atlantic Sea Salt. And, yes, like all her fudge, this just melts in the mouth - no effort required - and the top notch salt adds an extra note or two to the combination.  Another symphony from the fudge maestro!

Widely available and also at Mella’s on-line shop 

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Taste of the Week. Spice O’Life Curry Sauce

Taste of the Week
Spice O’Life Curry Sauce

Picked up a can of this Curry Sauce (it is made in Dunmanway by Spice O’Life) at the new O’Connor’s Butcher Food Hall in Mayfield that features some other artisan products as well.

There are some basic curry instructions on the side but no harm in adding carrots, mushrooms, onions, peppers, whatever you've handy, to the mix. And of course, you’ll have rice as well.

When cooked, just pour the sauce over the lot and fold in. That's what we did and were pleasantly surprised at the result. This sauce is excellent, our Taste of the Week.

The West Cork company “develop, create, and manufacture the solution to your sauce, marinades, dressings,  spice, seasoning and new product development needs” and their other brands include Dip!t, Marinade Me, Insanely Good and Presto! 

O’Connor’s, by the way, have a large bright building where the old Permanent TSB were and also a busy café called, appropriately enough, the Old Bank.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Taste of the Week. Davidson’s Pizzaiola

Taste of the Week

Davidson’s Pizzaiola
Their Facebook pic
What to have to dinner to-night? Sometimes I’m unsure, probably happens to most people. Then, if you’re lucky, you spot the answer on Facebook. Davidson’s, our local craft butchers, are pretty good on social media.

Pretty good at the essentials too. Just after someone asked the dinner question, a tempting picture of a Chicken Pizzaiola appeared on the butcher’s feed. 

Three juicy chicken breasts marinated in a tomato and herb sauce, topped with grated mozzarella, fresh red onion and chorizo, the perfect lazy option for the weekend. These also won a Gold Award at this years Speciality Foods competition.

So a quick trip up the road. Covered the foil dish in more foil and oven-baked for 35 minutes. Then it was dinner time! And our Taste of the Week was excellent. 
Ready to eat!

The chicken was superb, moist and tender. Obviously the marinade, with no shortage of punchy herbs included, did what it was supposed to do. The cheese melted down and the chorizo rings added spice and flavour.

And Davidson’s regularly come up with the goods. Great to have an innovative craft butcher on the doorstep.

Davidson’s Craft Butcher
 (021) 451 8184

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Taste of the Week. Athula's Tikka Masala Sauce

Taste of the Week
Athula Fusion Foods

We’ve featured Athula’s Piri Piri sauces previously and our Taste of the Week is again delighted to highlight his more recent Curry sauces. He has three: Tikka, Korma and Jalfrezi. We picked up a jar of the Tikka during the recent Cork Kerry Food Fair and that is our Taste of the Week.

We went for the classic Tikka Masala Chicken Curry. The creamy orange coloured sauce was just perfect, not too spicy, outstanding. 

Did you know, by the way, that Glasgow claims to have created this curry dish? Check it out here. They say it is perhaps one of the earliest examples of the modern fashion for 'fusion' cuisine.

In any event, Athula knows quite a bit about fusion, having grown up in Sri Lanka (where he now has a farm) and having worked in Ireland's food industry (including being Head Chef at Hayfield Manor - more here). He has perfected his take of his grandmother’s recipes. I think he’s got this one spot-on. 

Athula Fusion Foods,
Unit 1&2, J Street, 
Carrigaline Industrial Estate, 
Kilnageary Road, 
Carrigaline, Co. Cork

Tel: 087 136 7525

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Taste of the Week. Super Kale Pesto

Taste of the Week
Super Kale Pesto

Carolanne Rushe describes herself as the Chief Sweetie on our pack of her Sweet Beat Super Kale Pesto, our current Taste of the Week.

“Our raw kale pesto harnesses the awesome power of fresh kale. We’ve also added Activated Almonds to feed your brain too.” It is gluten free, dairy free and sugar free.

And it tastes well! We used it as a spread and as a dip. But the packet says you may stir it into some pastas, soups and stews as they do in the Sweet Beat Café in Sligo.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Taste of the Week. Express Quinoa & Golden Veg.

Taste of the Week
Express Quinoa & Golden Veg.

I’m becoming quite a fan of quinoa. Indeed, my latest experience has been all good and this Express Quinoa with Golden Vegetables, by Mothergrain, is my current Taste of the Week. And it is express: have it cold or heat it up in 90 seconds!

Got a few samples to try out and was wondering what to pair with this one. The official Blog Chef provided the answer when she came home with Goatsbridge fresh trout in the shopping. Tried the two together and it was an excellent plateful. 

If you want to take it higher, then add a bottle of Domaine Chaume-Arnaud Côtes du Rhone blanc, available at Bradley’s or online from Le Caveau. The wine is organic as is the quinoa.

See here for quinoa availability.