Showing posts with label chefs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label chefs. Show all posts

Monday, August 21, 2017

FEAST in the East. Midleton Festival Expands.


FEAST in the East.
Midleton Festival Expands.
Rory O'Connell
I've been dipping into the FEAST website to see what's in store for visitors to East Cork in early September......

FEAST, the expanded East Cork Food and Drink Festival 2017, is building on a strong foundation laid by the 14 years experience of the Midleton Festival. Events will run from 4th to 10th September with the family favourite, the Street Festival, on Saturday 9th September.
Bayview Terrace

Before the big day on the Saturday, there are quite a few restaurant highlights, beginning at the Bayview Hotel on Monday the 4th, where you are invited to “immerse yourself in the tastes, scents, sights and sounds of our Wild Atlantic Bounty... Be astounded by the creative, conjuring of Ciarán and his team over a Five-Course Tasting Menu... Drink it all in from the cliffside-splendour that is the Bayview at Ballycotton overlooking Ballycotton Bay and Harbour.”

The evening begins at 6pm with drinks on the spectacularly situated terrace, “followed by Ciarán’s imaginative and poetic Five-Course Seafood Celebration Menu and accompanying wines at 6.45pm.”
Demos galore

On the Tuesday, award-winning Chef Kevin Aherne invites you to join him in his SAGE Courtyard for a unique and memorable culinary event. Kevin will conjure up a Feast inspired by bygone eras and serve it in a traditional long table setting. Think roast pig, stuffed game birds, whole fish cooked on an open fire, ales, traditional cider, rounds of cheese, pies and tarts. Guests will dine outside under the heated canopy.
Ferrit & Lee

On the Wednesday, you may enjoy A Taste of East Cork in the Ferrit & Lee Restaurant, Distillery Walk, Midleton. To celebrate FEAST (East Cork Food and Drink Festival), they are hosting an event to showcase some of the fine produce East Cork has to offer. “We will be serving a 5 course tasting menu including two glasses of wine. There are only 40 seats available so booking early is advisable!”

Next up, on the Thursday, is a visit to Ballymaloe. The evening will begin at 7pm with Cocktails in the Walled Garden with Andy Ferreira (2017's World Class Irish Mixologist of the Year 2017 and representing Ireland in the World Class Global Final in Mexico). Andy will be using herbs foraged in the garden at Ballymaloe House. 

Dinner will be served at 8pm in the Long Dining Room in the house and the 3 course 'Seasonal Supper' menu will be written and prepared by Rory O'Connell, Ballymaloe Cookery School co-founder and teacher, author, TV personality and former Head Chef at Ballymaloe House.

On the Friday, why not head to Rostellan for the Chocolate, Cheese & Shellfish at Rostellan Chocolate. “We are showcasing our local food producers featuring Ballinrostig Homestead cheeses and local shellfish supplier Michael Barrett (The Lobsterman). We will be matching their produce with our wines and prosecco and we will also provide our coffees teas and Rostellan Hot Chocolate in our historic Courtyard. The event, which is not ticketed, is from 5pm to 8pm on Friday 8th Sept with live music so come early to avoid disappointment!”
Grow It Yourself (GIY). Advice, demos by the Courthouse in Midleton

And then comes Saturday, the Major Event; all over Midleton town there are events and demos galore:  Cooking Demos; Gin Demo; Grow Your Own Demo  (outside the courthouse);  The Long Table;  the Restaurant Tent. 

The usual Farmers Market will be on and look out for help and info from the folks of GIY. There is a Kids Area with Music Shows and Puppet Shows, Amusements of course. And you’ll also come across a Vintage Fair. A massive day, packed with food and fun.                               

For details on the Saturday and all the events during the week, click on the FEAST website here 






Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Beef 'n Turf. Mo Bros Cook Up A Storm!


MOVEMBER INVITES MO BROS TO ‘BRING IT ON HOME’ AND COOK UP A STORM WITH A COOKBOOK TO INSPIRE MEN TO THROW A DINNER PARTY

In 2010 Movember challenged Mo Bros around the country to have confidence in the kitchen, take pride in the meals they prepared and to ‘Cook like a Man’. In 2011 they ventured to the countryside and showed Mo Bros how to hunt, forage and fish for their supper with ‘Cook From The Land’. This year, Mo Bro chefs share their wisdom and knowledge with ‘Bring It On Home’- a new cookbook that encourages their fellow Mo Bros & Mo Sistas to celebrate Movember and host a dinner party during the month of Movember.

With a range of established expertise, the book hosts chefs from across the country who share their skills, tips and favourite dinner menus with their fellow moustachioed brethren and inspire them to host their own Mo inspired dinner parties. With delicious recipes the cookbook teaches men ‘if it’s worth doing – it’s worth doing right’ and to cook amazing meals with dishes that are tailored to help make hosting a dinner party simple – so more time can be spent around the table celebrating Movember and having fun.

Chefs from Diep Le Shaker, Ukiyo, Brooklodge, The Damson Diner and The Fumbally are just some of the many Mo Bro chefs who have shared their knowledge with mouth-watering recipes in ‘Bring It On Home’. Make your dinner party memorable with a beef bourgignon, BBQ prawns with piri piri, herb crusted john dory and a simple cheese fondue  and know that your guests will be blown away with your cooking prowess.

Not alone have we got the pretty pictures for you. We've also got the recipes right here

Movember, the month formerly known as November, is when brave and selfless men around the world grow a moustache, with the support of the women in their lives, to raise awareness and funds for men’s health - specifically prostate and testicular cancer. Donate at www.movember.com



Friday, September 14, 2012

My take on the Celtic Cook-off

 
Clockwise from top left: John McKenna (MC), Stephane Delourme,  Jack Stein,  Tony Singh,
Ian Bennett ,   Butch Buttery,  Garry O'Hanlon
  

The Celtic chefs: their dishes and their thoughts
My take on the Celtic Cook-off


It looks as if all six Celtic Cook-off chefs enjoyed this week’s visit to West Cork and hopes are high that some of them will be back again, following the example of Roy Brett the 2011 champion.

Roy, whose restaurant is the Ondine in Edinburgh, was guest chef at the West Cork Hotel on Tuesday night where he displayed his talents with a fantastic meal called A Taste of Ondine, one of the highlights for the week.

But a highlight for Roy and he said as much at the Cook-off on Wednesday was the Secondary Schools Cookery Competition. “This was one of the best moments. We can learn from the children, the food is part of their blood. The winners, the Mercy Heights, were outstanding, the food was incredible. The kids here have a great knowledge of food.”

It was a sentiment echoed by Jack Stein who served up a dish of Monkfish Cheeks as his meal in the Cook-off. “Food, culture, music, all the same thing,” he said, echoing the words I heard not too long ago from Kay Harte of Cork’s Farmgate.

Interview by MC John McKenna, Stein went on to emphasise the part that these elements, food in particular, can play in improving local life and keeping the kids at home. “Good restaurants draw people in and extend the holiday season”. A point emphasised by the fact that the Stein organisation in Cornwall employs some 450 people!

Stephane Delourme (from Brittany) also works with the Stein company, at the Seafood Restaurant in Padstow. Before that he worked in Dublin and was a regular visitor to Baltimore which he loved. He has noticed a huge improvement in Irish food over the last 13 or 14 years. He served up a dish of Dover Sole with local mussels, vegetables and beans from Brittany.

There was a big welcome for Wales representative Ian Bennett (of the Welcome to Town Restaurant) and he spoke of a fairly similar food scene in his native country where his fisherman rings him from the boat and tells him what he has. “You can’t get fresher than that!” Not surprisingly, fish featured in his dish: Union Hall Turbot with mussels, parsnips and Stonewell cider. By the way, we weren't supplied with a list of ingredients for the dishes so my lists are not complete!

Garry O’Hanlon of the Viewmount House in Longford won the Cook-off with his Hill Lamb (loin), a current dish in the restaurant. Local vegetables and fried bone marrow featured in the dish as did the newish West Cork Garlic, treated with a little local honey. I liked Garry’s modus operandi: “Find the ingredients, then bounce from there.”

Tony Singh, the man who “brought cocktails to Edinburgh” is co-founder of that city’s acclaimed restaurant Oloroso. He said we had fantastic produce here and used lamb and langoustines, spicy potato and a minted herb salsa verde. MC John McKenna praised Tony for using the spices “with sympathy and knowledge”.

Baltimore seafood featured heavily in Butch Buttery’s dish. Among many other roles, Butch is chef and recipe consultant for the Manx Organic Network and Island Seafoods. Langoustines, lobster, prawns, mussels and monkfish, even Sally Barnes’ fabulous smoked haddock, not forgetting his Isle of Man scallops (each chef was allowed an ingredient from home) were all added to the Bisque type mix.

It looked well too with the langoustines attempting to escape the bowl. Butch though said that this wasn't a “dish to worship, get it in and get it down.”

‘It’s a tribute to the quality of our award-winning West Cork producers that top chefs are so willing to come to West Cork and cook with our world class food,’ said Neil Grant, manager of the West Cork Hotel. ‘All of this year’s competitors have been truly impressed by the produce available to us here and these are chefs at the top of their game, they don’t mince their words!’

“It is great festival, unbelievable the amount of voluntary work that goes into it. A massive thanks to the suppliers, sponsors, judges, to the chefs and to Roy Brett who has been a brilliant ambassador for us. Must also mention Fáilte Ireland, great backers and here in force this evening.”

Neil had praise for Clare Gallagher, chairperson of the organising committee, for Avril Allshire, and Sally Barnes and Stephen Sage, his colleagues on the Working Group. It was a very enjoyable evening, though I thought the visual delivery to the 200 plus audience in the ballroom lacked a bit but I’m told they are working on that for next year.

So onwards and upwards with the Celtic Cook-off. The more we pull together the further we will go!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Murphy’s Little Big Night Out - in the afternoon!

Murphy’s Little Big Night Out
in the afternoon! 


Clockwise from top left: chef Larry McGrath, chef Richard Corrigan and his stew, Volcano pizza, trad in session, Corrigan's demo and Baldwin's Ice Cream.
Chef Richard Corrigan was the star as the Murphy’s series of Little Big Nights Out morphed to an afternoon of food and music at the old Beamish and Crawford Brewery in South Main Street.

Dubliner Richard, self styled as the “real” Richard Corrigan, took to the demo stage to show what he could do with sea bass and that demo, with Barry Tyner acting as MC, drew the audience but it was his Irish Stew at the Bogeda stall that drew the lines of hungry punters.

He is more into teaching nowadays and he told me his message to all young chefs is to get good fresh ingredients and then let the different elements, meat, fish, veg, even the humble potato, speak for themselves. No point in getting top notch ingredients and then drowning them in overpowering sauces or smothering their vital signs in marinades. The simple stew, with a well judged stout sauce (Murphy’s of course), illustrated his point.

Chef Larry McGrath was also in lively form on Sunday afternoon. You’ll be seeing him soon at the Olde Bakery Market on Wellington Road. He expects to be there on Friday nights with a brand new sushi stall.

Sober Lane was busy and had big queues lining up for their very tasty Chicken Goujons. Volcano Pizza is always a popular stall at these events, and at markets all over the city and county and, after enjoying a slice of their Pepperoni pizza, I now know why!

Starting out with a free pint of Murphy’s Stout for everyone in the audience, it turned out to be quite an enjoyable afternoon, with quite a lot of visitors there, including a couple from the south of Spain at “our” table. In another nearby marquee, a lively day’s trad music, curated by the renowned De Barra’s Folk Club of Clonakilty, unfolded as Murphy’s Bia, Ceoil agus Craic lived up to its billing.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

CONGRATS KAMIL, 2011 Euro-toques winner

Second year running for Knockranny House Hotel
Kamil Dubanik, from Knockranny House Hotel, is Crowned Winner of
2011 Euro-toques Young Chef of the Year


The best parties are celebrated in the kitchen. Young chef Kamil Dubanik, from Knockranny House Hotel in Co. Mayo, celebrates becoming the 21st Euro-toques Young Chef of the Year, in association with BIM & Failte Ireland. 


This is an exceptional win for Knockranny House Hotel as last year’s winner also came from the hotel (Mary Ryan was the 2010 Euro-toques Young Chef winner). Chefs mentored by Knockranny House Hotel Head Chef Seamus Commons (right in picture, with Kamil) have reached the competition final for three years running.  Toques off to Kamil Dubanik (23), who was crowned the winner on Monday 28 November at a gourmet tasting lunch prepared by the competition finalists in The Merrion Hotel Dublin.

This is the ultimate acoloade that Kamil and fellow finalists have been contesting for over the last 6 weeks.  Kamil’s journey to this culinary award is remarkable. Originally from Poland, he has been in the kitchen only three year; starting out as kitchen porter Knockranny House Hotel in Westport, Co. Mayo and workings his way up to his current position of Demi-Chef de Partie. He recently completed an Advanced Certificate in Professional Cookery at GMIT.

His recipe for the culinary skills test was Roast Troncon of Achill Island Turbot, Dublin Bay Prawn Tortellini, Jerusalem Artichoke, Mushroom, Cheek, Liver, Dublin Bay Prawn, Lovage.  Cooking has allowed Kamil express his passion for a diversity of ingredients and demonstrate his creativity.  His interpretation of the competition brief and his understanding of ingredients was evident in the dish he delivered to the judging panel. Judges felt he was an eager, hungry chef who showed intelligence in his approach and an extremely high level of skill considering his mere 3 years in the kitchen. A talent to be watched.

Kamil is motivated by sometimes taking the least obvious approach to cooking.  For example in his culinary skills test, he used the fish cheeks and liver in his recipe which achieved different flavours and textures in his dish, that stood out to the judges.  Kamil appreciates and respects great Irish ingredients and pushes his own culinary instinct to use all elements where possible.  This creative thinking is also parallel to Eurotoques values of “nose to tail” cooking.

Kamil’s chef hero is the infamous Ferran Adrià and while the world’s is now his oyster, Kamil remains true to his second home of Ireland and would like to progress his career working with the best talent in the country.  Kamil  is mentored by Knockranny House Hotel Euro-toques Head Chef Seamus Commons (formerly Head Chef at Dublin’s Michelin star L’Ecrivain restaurant).

The top prize for the 2011 Euro-toques Young Chef of the Year is the opportunity of an all-expenses paid stage at The Ivy, London's favourite restaurant, under Executive Chef Gary Lee. Plus a one week stage at the award winning Michelin star Chapter One restaurant in Dublin under the tutelage of Euro-toques head chef Ross Lewis.

The ultimate challenge in the Euro-toques Young Chef competition was the culinary skills test which took place in Chapter One Dublin on Sunday 27 November.  Speaking on behalf of the judging panel, Ross Lewis commented on the high standard of skill and creativity from the finalists this year.  “There was a very high standard reflecting local and original cuisine that was thoughtful, clever and well crafted.  It was very hard to choose a clear winner today and they should be all extremely proud of themselves.”

Kamil Dubanik competed for this honour along with his fellow finalists - Aisling Gallagher (24) from Ballynahinch Castle, Galway; Kyle Greer (24) from No 27 Talbot Street Belfast; Micheal Harley (22) from Rathmullan House, Co. Donegal; David Magaeen (24) from Restaurant Victoria Belfast and Margaret Roche (23) from The Cellar at The Merrion Hotel Dublin.

Each of the six finalists in this years competition final showcased their culinary expertise by each cooking a course for the presentation lunch in The Merrion Hotel.  Each course was carefully paired with the appropriate wine for the dish, supplied by Findlater Wine & Spirit Group.

Among the overall prizes, each of the finalists will win a unique food experience with BIM and Failte Ireland. BIM will host a one day practical on-site introduction to the complex world of the seafood industry, visiting a seafood facility and discussing how fish is caught or harvested, bought, and sold, and what this all means to a chef. Including meetings with key industry personnel, processors and industry chef.  Failte Ireland will host a Food Tourism road trip - an educational 4 day food focused road trip taking in ‘hands-on’ cooking time  in top professional kitchens, visits to artisan food producers;  tastings, demos, unique meal experiences  and overnight stays with exemplary Irish food and hospitality operators.

The Euro-toques Young Chef competition emphasises training and development, with the role of the mentor being central to the process.  This years sponsors are BIM and Failte Ireland and their involvement reflects their recognition of the importance of chefs in building Ireland’s national and international food reputation, the pivotal role that ‘local food’ plays in this and, above all, their commitment to education and development in this sector.  This year’s competition is also supported suppliers La Rousse Foods, Findlater Wine & Spirit Group and Bragard, and Industry partners The Merrion Hotel Dublin, The Ivy London and Chapter One Restaurant.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

SIX TOP YOUNG CHEFS IN EURO-TOQUES FINAL

Its Hotting Up in the Kitchen
Euro-toques Young Chef Competition 2011 – Finalists announced

The temperature has been high in the kitchen and now the finalists, six outstanding young professional chefs from around the country, have been announced (8 November) each competing  for this year’s Euro-toques Young Chef of the Year 2011.

The Euro-toques Young Chef of the Year, in association with BIM & Failte Ireland, is the only professional culinary competition in the country based around local and artisan food ingredients. Through mentoring and training based prizes the competition aims to contribute to the professional development of promising young industry professionals.

Despite the recession the number of skilled chefs in Ireland significantly falls short of the demand in Irish kitchens and restaurants; many qualified chefs travel abroad and not enough return home!  For 21 years, the Euro-toques Young Chef competition has been searching for – and nurturing - the future culinary talent of Ireland.

Celebrating this achievement are Kamil Dubanik (23) from Knockranny House Hotel, Westport; Aisling Gallagher (24) from Ballynahinch Castle, Galway; Kyle Greer (24) from No 27 Talbot Street Belfast; Micheal Harley (22) from Rathmullan House, Co. Donegal; David Magaeen (24) from Restaurant Victoria Belfast and Margaret Roche (23) from The Cellar at The Merrion Hotel Dublin. (detailed biogs below).

Such industry chefs as Paul Flynn, Ross Lewis and current Euro-toques Commissioner-General Gearoid Lynch are involved in the competition judging, along with representatives from competition partners BIM and Failte Ireland. Candidates, who must be under the age of 25, submitted a written recipe entry and were then shortlisted for interview and a blind taste test. From these two stages, six finalists were selected to compete in the final.

The heat is now on!  These six finalists now have the next 3 weeks to devise and practice their dishes for the culinary skills test final in Chapter One Restaurant on Sunday 27th November. They must prepare and plate 2 portions of an original dish, using Dublin Bay Prawns and Achill Island Turbot, and present it to the panel of 5 chef judges for tasting, within 70 minutes. On the skills test judging panel Paul Flynn (The Tannery Dungarvan) and Ross Lewis (Chapter One Restaurant Dublin) will be joined by Lorcan Cribbin (Il Segreto Restaurant Dublin), Marc Amand, MD La Rousse Foods and panel chair Neil McFadden. Both Cribbin & McFadden have competed for Ireland on a World Stage in the renowned Bocuse d’Or and know what it takes to compete at that level.

In addition, over the next 3 weeks, the six young finalists will also need to perfect their dishes for a tasting menu which will showcase their talents for state, industry and media guests at the 5 star Merrion Hotel Dublin on Monday 28th of November. Each of the finalists will be introduced to guests before their course is served. At the end of the presentation lunch  the 21st Euro-toques Young Chef of the Year will be announced.

Despite the recession the number of skilled chefs in Ireland significantly falls short of the demand in Irish kitchens and restaurants; many qualified chefs travel abroad and not enough return home!  For 21 years, the Euro-toques Young Chef competition has been searching for – and nurturing - the future culinary talent of Ireland.

“We are crying out for talented, hard-working chefs in our kitchens right now” commented Gearoid Lynch, Commissioner General Euro-toques Ireland at today’s event.  “It is very heartening to see young chefs such as these six, who are willing to push themselves, aim ever higher and who see a future for themselves in this industry. This competition allows us to contribute to their development as chefs and also to hold them up as examples to those who may come after them; both in terms of what is expected of them, but also what they can achieve. It is also hugely important for us to recognise the experienced chefs who give their time and commitment to training future talent. Our competition partners BIM and Failte Ireland have recognised the role that chefs have to play in promoting Irish food and tourism, and we must ensure our industry lives up to that expectation by investing in its future”.

The competition emphasises training and development, with the role of the mentor being central to the process.  This years sponsors are BIM and Failte Ireland and their involvement reflects their recognition of the importance of chefs in building Ireland’s national and international food reputation, the pivotal role that ‘local food’ plays in this and, above all, their commitment to education and development in this sector.  This year’s competition is also supported suppliers La Rousse Foods, Findlater Wine & Spirit Group and Bragard, and Industry partners The Merrion Hotel Dublin, The Ivy London and Chapter One Restaurant.

The top prize for the 2011 Young Chef of the Year will be the opportunity of an all-expenses paid stage at The Ivy, London's favourite restaurant, under Executive Chef Gary Lee. Plus a one week stage at the award winning Michelin star Chapter One restaurant in Dublin under the tutelage of Euro-toques head chef Ross Lewis.

Among the overall prizes, each of the finalists will win a unique food experience with BIM and Failte Ireland. BIM will host a one day practical on-site introduction to the complex world of the seafood industry, visiting a seafood facility and discussing how fish is caught or harvested, bought, and sold, and what this all means to a chef. Including meetings with key industry personnel, processors and industry chef.  Failte Ireland will host a Food Tourism road trip - an educational 4 day food focused road trip taking in ‘hands-on’ cooking time  in top professional kitchens, visits to artisan food producers;  tastings, demos, unique meal experiences  and overnight stays with exemplary Irish food and hospitality operators.

For more info, including biogs of the young chefs, read here...