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Loughbeg Farm Ice-Cream So Creamy. Amazing Flavours
San Gimignano in Italy regards itself as a great ice-cream centre and, indeed, when I visited a few years back, boasted the World Champion among its narrow streets. The ice-cream there, fresh and full of fruit, is gorgeous (my cappuccino was not!) but I reckon Loughbeg Farm from Schull, in County Cork, has come up with a few world class contenders.
The farm is well known for its goats, under the care of Josephine (mainly!) and Walter Ryan-Purcell, and this ice-cream is based on goat’s milk but it also contains cow’s cream, along with sugar and egg yolk.
First came across these at the Schull Sunday Market a while back but now they are ready for public consumption and on sale at the Fresh From West Cork Stall in the English Market. Very Highly Recommended. Watch out San Gimignano!
Watch out San Gimignano!
My first tasting this week came from the Strawberry pot. I thought it was absolutely amazing, a great mix of milk, cream and fruit, more like a high class sorbet than a mere ice-cream.
Next up was the Banana! A total surprise, a delicious one. I thought the strawberry was good but this was magnificent, the true banana flavours shining through.
Anticipation was keen as I spooned out the Vanilla. But I needn't have worried! This is yet another beauty, a creamy flavoursome classic. Didn't get to sample the Chocolate but I'd bet my house on it, bet it is every bit as tasty as the others in the range.
This gorgeous range is really worth a try and I’m sure there are some chefs out there who could turn out fabulous desserts with it. Over to you!
Also available at Hegarty's Centra, Schull, and Field's SuperValu, Skibbereen
The Desmond family in Ballinhassig, (County Cork), make a fantastic soft goats cheese, under the Orchard Cottage label, and it is our Taste of the Week. Can't make out how I’ve haven't come across this one until now.
It is beautiful and comes in a jar. There are two different combinations: the round balls of cheese come in a sunflower oil with sun dried tomatoes, basil and garlic and also in sunflower oil with thyme and garlic. This latter has won a silver medal at the world cheese awards and is the one I’ve tasted. The other one (pictured) is in the fridge - though not for long more!
The cheese flavour is mild and the texture is creamy, milder and creamier than usual, less of a tang. May have something to do with the fact that these goats feed mostly on good grass rather than on a rough hillside or bog. If you haven't liked goats cheese previously, this is worth a try and could well be the one that puts you on the way to liking it.
I got mine from the Fresh from West Cork stall in the English Market but the Orchard Cottage products are widely available including Thursday’s market in Mahon and Saturday’s in the Coal Quay. Read more about the Desmond’s farm here.