Showing posts with label Flynn's Kitchen. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Flynn's Kitchen. Show all posts

Friday, January 3, 2014

Taste of the Week

Taste of the Week
One of the most encouraging developments in Farmers Markets in the last 12 months or so is the cooperation between the various producers and market stallholders. And I don’t mean looking out for one another, which they do.

Dungarvan Brewing Company's use of Badger and Dodo's coffee in their absolutely gorgeous Coffee and Oatmeal Stout was an early example while, more recently Arbutus Bread started used Eight Degrees beer for their Beer Bread.

The most recent one I came across is, I think, a very tasty success indeed, and is my Taste of the Week. Here you have the free range produce of Martin Conroy’s Woodside Farm in East Cork becoming the base of a superb ready to use (well, you do have to heat it!) meal by Flynn's Kitchen of Riverstick.

Basically, the meat balls are made by Iain Flynn using Martin's pork mince, beef mince and lardons. The sauce is tomato based with basil, chive, garlic oil and veg added. And I can you tell us the result is divine! Enjoyed that the other day and now can’t wait to try Iain’s Chorizo and Bean Stew, their other combination, both available at the local Farmers Markets.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Buy local, fresh and fair!

Sometimes a mission. Sometimes messing about.

Stumbling out of the early morning and into a confusion of stalls and marvellous food. That was me at Mahon Point Farmers Market  last Thursday, sans list, sans plan.

Lucky then that I stumbled on a new product by Iain Flynn of Flynn’s Kitchen.  Spotted a colourful jar in the corner where he normally displays his soups. The label: Chorizo and Beans. “Great, I’ll have a pair of those,” I said to the modest maestro Iain.

Put the glasses on when I came home and realised it wasn't soup at all, but another four letter word: stew! A challenge, but no panic. Paired it up with a bunch of Sally Bee’s meatballs and, bingo, we had a fantastic jackpot of lively tastes and flavours that, matched with a superb wine from La Rioja Alta, the Vino Arana Reserva 2004, went down brilliantly.

Like a good wine, Mahon is well balanced. May I present Barrie Tyner, a talkative and very engaging fellow. Can’t ever leave his little stall without feeling guilty as he hands out generous samples of fantastic chicken liver pâtés, a second shoved into your hand before you have delivered the first to your mouth.

And the pâtés represent the cooperation that exists and is growing among local producers – the livers come from Tom Clancy (Ballycotton Poultry)  who also has a stall in Mahon. Sometimes their rich and delicious "smoothiness" enhanced by a dash (Barrie’s dash could well be twice that of others) of cognac, sometimes by a more modest caramelised onion, the livers are transformed into something wonderful.

Perfect when simply served on Arbutus baguette as Barrie does (Arbutus are at the next stall). This time at home, I had something special, a Mango relish with a Creole touch, made in the Vendee and bought last summer on the drive home from the Basque country. Here in a cold wet January evening in Cork, the summer relish and the winter pate, not to mention some organic leaves from Derek of Greenfield Farm (also at Mahon Market), came together in a delicious dish for all seasons.

I know there are many excellent local relishes available at the markets that would make a match with the pâtés. But you are allowed to reach out, occasionally! Lots of thing could be better here but thankfully there are no food police.

By all means try the good stuff from abroad but above all take pride in the local ways, in our heritage. Buy local, fresh and fair, and make the local economy stronger. No big deal really. No violence involved, just a savoury and sweet revolution. It starts with me. And you.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Woodside Free Range Pigs

Woodside Free Range Pigs
Bubbling Up Nicely
Taste of the Week in this house came from Woodside Farm. Actually, the Conroy’s at Woodside could provide a taste of the week every week, even if they confined it to their Free Range Pigs, pedigree Saddleback and pedigree Gloucester Old Spot pigs.

I have tried quite a bit of the range: Shoulder of Pork, Pork Loin, Pork Belly, Leg of Pork, Pork Chops, Pork Escalopes, Pork Steak, Spare Ribs, Minced Pork, Pork Sausages, Gluten Free Sausages, Cumberland Sausages, Liver, Kidneys, Caul Fat, and Pigs Tail.

That is just the pork. Here is the bacon selection: Collar Bacon, Loin of Bacon, Streaky Bacon, Ham Fillet, Dry Cure Back & Streaky Rashers, Dry Cure Gammon Steak, Lardons, Bacon Ribs, Trotters, Pigs Cheek.

Last Thursday in Mahon Point Farmers Market, I got a piece of Dried Cured Ham from Martin. He is in Mahon every Thursday and in Douglas every Saturday while Noreen is on duty in Midleton every Saturday.

We went pretty traditional with the bacon. Got lots of vegetables in Mahon but had no cabbage when Sunday came around. Up then to the local Supervalu and picked up an excellent head of Savoy, a terrific combination with the very flavoursome meat.

And all polished off with no worries about what was in the meat. Martin: “We cure our own bacon and make all our own sausages. We don't use any preservatives or stabilisers; because of this our sausages have a five day shelf life. We also make Pork and Apple Burgers which contain just Pork and Apple, these are also Gluten Free. We only sell meat from our pigs and don't buy in any meat and pass it off as our own. When you buy our products you can be sure you are getting a Truly Free Range Product.”

In recent months, I’ve been getting granola along with dried fruits (e.g., papaya, mango...) from Len’s Cereals, also in Mahon. But he has lots more, including Puy Lentils. Got a bag of those last Thursday. But what to cook with them?

Had been thinking of some lamp chops but instead decided to go with butchers sausages. So up then to the local Coolmore Meats in Montenotte. I found out that they don’t do their own sausages but the good news is that they stock O’Flynn’s Gourmet sausages.  No hesitation, bought a bunch and between them, the lentils and some sun dried tomatoes, we had quite a tasty plateful.

Mark’s Cheese in Mahon carries a range of Irish and European products but had no Irish sheep cheese for me last week. And indeed won’t have it from his supplier for another couple of months! So I settled for a wedge of the Spanish Manchego.

While in the Basque country last summer,  I came across the local sheeps cheese regularly in the restaurants and it was invariably served with jam (black cherry). Iain Flynn (Flynn’s Kitchen)  includes jams among his award winning products at the market and I bought a pot of his excellent Mixed Berry (livened up with black pepper and Kirsch) and that went down every well with the Manchego.

As you can see, the Manchego and the lentils were about the only non Irish ingredients in that bout of shopping but at least I bought them locally and had a lot of fun doing do. The more you go to the markets and indeed to your local shop and butcher, the more interaction you’ll have as they always have time for a chat or even a suggestion as to how to make the best of your purchase. Buy local – why not hit Mahon tomorrow? – and enjoy the craic.

Sunday, November 13, 2011



November sunshine flooded the Douglas Farmers Market this Saturday morning as I strolled around among the thirty or so stalls. It was my first visit here and glad to see old familiar faces such as Woodside and Flynn's Kitchen but great too to meet up with the newcomers of the Ballyhoura Wild Mushroom stall (soon to have a permanent one!) and also La Dolce Vita.

Let’s start with the Italian. After all we owe Trap and company - big time! And of course the Italian cuisine is no punishment. Far from it. We got a few tastes before settling on a Bolognaise ragout and a couple of bunches of Tagliattelli.

That was the night's main course settled. Starter? It was just a few steps away at the Ballyhoura Wild Mushroom stand. Again a couple of tastings before purchasing a gorgeous soup. There was a good date on that so we kept exploring and settled on some chanterelles for the starter. They have quite a selection, including Shiitake and Oyster.

While we call regularly to Woodside  and Flynn’s Kitchen , they too had something new, at least new to us. Enjoyed some of Woodside’s extra tasty gluten free honey sausages at lunch-time.

Iain Flynn makes some terrific jams but it was the first time I had spotted his mixed berry with black pepper and kirsch, a terrific match with the sourdough from Arbutus close by.

Room in the bag for ten rosy red apples, total cost just 2 euro, and then headed across the village to On the Pigs Back. What a beautiful sparkling clean shop with all the choices we’ve come to expect at the English Market and space too for a cuppa and a snack.

Got some cheese here, again after a tasting. So we’re pretty sure we’ll enjoy the Mossfield Organic Mature Gouda with Oregano.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Rice growing near Arles
Last Thursday wasn't the best of of days and the Mahon Point Farmers Market  had moved indoors (into the covered car park) to avoid the forecasted wind and rain. Still, I enjoyed the visit and called to some regulars (such as Woodside and Arbutus) and also met one or two new folks.

Back at the ranch, we put the purchases to good use. You’ll probably know that the mozzarella from Toonsbridge Dairy in Macroom was in the presentation made to the Queen on her recent visit to the city market.

But did you know they also make a Philadelphia type cheese with the same buffalo milk and it is called Buffadelphia . Picked up a packet at the Real Olive Company  stall in Mahon (they probably have it in the English Market also) and used it in a salad that included some beetroot from Lolo’s stall, where a three head bunch cost just €2.50. The salads came from the back garden and all in all it was very tasty.

At the market, I had bought some potatoes and vegetables from Ballycurraginny Farm and also from Ballintubber Farm but none of these was required for that night’s dinner.

The centrepiece here was Lamb Tagine from Flynn’s Kitchen. Iain Flynn’s stall isn't the biggest but he has quite an excellent range including soups, pates, jams and prepared dishes.

Brought some rice back from the recent visit to Provence and decided it to use it with the Tagine. Had visions of a nice photo as we added red and black rice to the white. But the colours all ran and so no photo as we spooned out the purple mix!

Still it tasted very well indeed and proved an excellent accompaniment to the Tagine which, as usual for Flynn’s Kitchen, was spot-on, the ingredients top class.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011


Drove down to Kinsale in the sunshine today to visit the local Farmer's Market. Highlights included getting some St Bridget's Cheese from Mark's Cheese, his trademark Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni from Iain of Flynn's Kitchen and a delicious Spelt and Honey loaf from the Baker's Oven. Double click on collage to enlarge.

Saturday, February 26, 2011



Kinvara Smoked Salmon:
You’ll never be stuck for food ideas once you have a keyboard and access to social media. Recipes abound here. And we were glad of the service on a recent Saturday night when a planned starter wasn't working out.

Tapped my way to Kinvara Smoked Salmon. I knew they have a smashing little recipe brochure and spotted it on the home page. Clicked my way down and found just what was required:  Kinvara Smoked Salmon Potato Salad.  A beautiful starter indeed.

Killowen Vintage Cheddar
Killowen Vintage Cheddar is a product of Newmarket Creameries and is sold in a distinctive 200 gram box.  It is “typically matured for at least two years”, is creamy and full flavoured and very enjoyable and ideal for people who may find some of the other mature cheddars a bit on the dry side.

I usually come across Iain of Riverstick based Flynn’s Kitchen at the Farmers Market in Mahon Point. Less than two weeks back, I picked up his newest soup: Potato, Leek and Thyme Soup. Many potato and leek soups can be bland enough but Iain’s judicious use of Thyme and seasoning has certainly given the old formula a new life and at €3.00 a pot (or two for a fiver) is well worth a try as indeed are all his other soups and good things.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010



Fed up of cooking and the kitchen? Let this man feed you for a while.

Iain Flynn is a national award winner and

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Monday, December 13, 2010


  Colum O'Regan, Horizon Organic Farm, Supplier to Just Food


Three cheers for our artisan soupmakers. They make us full. They make us warm. Especially these cold days.

I’m thinking of three in particular: Just Food , Flynn's Kitchen and Cully & Sully. And they don't stop at soup. They also make other delicious products – just click on their sites to check it out.

I recently picked up a