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Wednesday, October 26, 2016
Taste of the Week
Hederman’s Hot Smoked Salmon
Just one look and I was hooked. Frank Hederman’s side of smoked salmon lay temptingly on the bare boards of his market table in Midleton. The gorgeous rich shades of red/orange, from the smoke and the added Kashmiri chillies, were enhanced by the autumn sun. There was no need to even taste a sample. Knowing that it had come from an old authentic smokehouse a few miles away and knowing how carefully Frank sources and handles his fish, I bought a piece.
And there was no putting it in the fridge when I got home. No, this was to be used within hours. It can, of course, be refrigerated and later served at room temperature or gently re-heated. If you want to slice, that is best done straight from the fridge. It is flakier than cold smoked and indeed is easy to flake for your plate.
You’ll find while flaking that every second piece is going into your mouth. Maybe I should have bought more? In any event it is absolutely delicious and succulent and our Taste of the Week. Aside from Midleton, you may also buy it in his shop in the English Market and of course he has it for sale online as well.
The salmon is farmed organically on the west coast of Ireland. It is Kiln-smoked by the master smoker over a live beech wood fire in Cobh and sprinkled with mildly hot Kashmiri Chillies. The chillies are more a condiment than a spice in this case. Enjoy
Belvelly Smoke House
Phone: +353 (0) 21 481 1089
Monday, April 14, 2014
Talk of the Tongue
International Wine and Food Society Event
|The Tongue (left) and more from last Thursday's Celebrating Local Tastes.|
“Celebrating Local Tastes” was the title of the first outing for 2014 of the Munster Branch of the International Wine and Food Society. Held at L'Atitude 51 (1 Union Quay), it turned into an absorbing evening with suppliers Frank Hederman, Jack McCarthy, On the Pig’s Back and Eve’s Chocolates taking the opportunity to showcase their impressive wares while the whole event was enhanced by some well chosen words, not to mention well chosen wines*, by our hostess Beverly Mathews.
First up was smoker Frank Hederman: “Our smokehouse food is made very simply using salt and smoke as natural preservatives to enhance very beautiful Irish raw materials. We are in the condiment business, simply adding flavour, creating new taste experiences and memories using age-old, natural techniques.”
Most of us are familiar with his famous smoked salmon and mackerel, maybe even with the smoked mussels. Lately he has produced smoked butter and on Thursday last introduced us to the new smoked Creme Fraiche. If you see it, buy it!
Then it was the turn of On the Pig's Back and Maria Perez concentrated on their cheeses and demonstrated a terrific variety of flavours using Ardsallagh, Ardrahan and Crozier Blue, among others, to make the point that local cheeses are absolutely first class, capable of holding their own in any company.
One man who can certainly do that is Kanturk butcher Jack McCarthy. He came laden with generous plates of his fabulous charcuterie, Irish charcuterie he emphasized, maybe even Duhallow charcuterie!
On Thursday last, he had quite a selection, including his Italian style copa. Then he introduced his Sliabh Luachra, an air dried beef for which they have been named Nationality Speciality Champions. We thought that was good but what really set us talking was his Tongue. It brought memories back for many (of a certain age!) but everyone was talking about it in a most complimentary way!
Had to finish off this excellent evening with something sweet and that was supplied by Jill from Eve’s Chocolates. “Eve’s”, she said, “is one of Cork's best kept secrets”. But that is not how they want it. So do go and visit them at Eve's Chocolate Shop, 8 College Commercial Park, Magazine Road, Cork. If you go this week, watch out as you could be falling over eggs and bunnies or they may be falling over you. Death by chocolate!
The Wine and Food Society are planning their next outing and if you would like to become a member then contact Aoife (treasurer) firstname.lastname@example.org. Other officers are Richie Scott (assistant treasurer), Beverley Matthews (secretary) and Greg Canty (chairman)
*The wines were:
Valdespino, Manzanilla Deliciosa "En Rama" (unfiltered)
Pipoli Greco Fiano from Basilicata (Southern Italy) 2011
Chateau Ste. Eulalie "La Cantilene" from Minervois La Laviniere 2009
Saturday, September 21, 2013
Culture Night Food
Some food stops on the Culture trail in Cork's English Market last evening.
Bottom: Chocolate Soup and Belgian Waffle with salted caramel,
both by Lilly Higgins at the ABC stall. Above: O'Connell's Crab Cake with
Smoked Mackerel and Salmon by Hederman.
Top: Plate from the Olive Stall.
Main pic shows people queuing at Hedermans.
Thursday, September 19, 2013
Bruno’s Mouth-watering Pizzas
In Bruno’s in Kinsale, they make a pizza using Frank Hederman’s smoked mackerel. It is a mouth-watering taste experience.
Probably would not have been recognized in Naples in 1889. At the start of that year, according to food writer Matthew Fort (Eating Up Italy), there were just two pizzas. One was the basic pizza bianca (the crust plus olive oil and a garlic rub), the other the pizza marinara (so called because the sailors could take the ingredients to sea with them).
Then Queen Margherita of Savoy came to visit and they invented the pizza Margherita, “which combines tomato, mozzarella and basil leaves in imitation of the Italian flag in her honour”.
|Courgettes like you've never tasted them before; a gem of a starter.|
Pizza would never be the same again, as topping after topping was invented and used. Not sure that anywhere else uses the smoked fish, maybe they just haven’t any as good. But, if you are in Kinsale, do drop in to Bruno’s (open from six every evening) and treat yourself.
And you may well keep returning and studying the pizza. You may start at the start as they do both the Marinara and the Margherita and specials keep popping up on their big red board (also on their Facebook page). The mackerel is not the only local produce that Bruno’s use as St Tola Goat Cheese, Jack McCarthy’s Black Pudding and Toonsbridge Mozzarella also appear on the menu.
Aside from the produce, another plus is that the Bruno pizza is done in their own wood fired brick oven, especially imported from Naples. It is complete with paddle which you can see being wielded in the kitchen, viewable as you come in the door.
And another factor is their crust is made from slow rising sourdough. You know the way many pizza edges are hard and usually discarded. Not the case here. I ate every crumb of mine. A little Primitivo and later a little Valpolicella helped!
Not into pizza. Don’t worry. Lots more to choose from, including salad and bruschetta. Perhaps you’d like a fish dish such as Fresh local squid with chill and garlic. Maybe a heap of courgette ribbons.
What was that again? A mound of courgettes ribbons. Yes, indeed, another surprise for your taste buds. Doesn’t sound much, does it. And, even when topped with a bunch of pine nuts, the green and white mix doesn’t look that great.
But take a chance and start eating and soon you’ll know you are enjoying quite a treat. A treat that shows the policy of buying locally and in season and handling the produce well is paying off, not just for Bruno’s Tom and Fiona but for their customers as well. No wonder then that on a gloomy mid-September night, the split level restaurant is full!
Fresh Ravioli of Organic beetroot and ricotta|
with a lemon and sage butter and rocket and parmesan
It is quite a quirky building, built up the slight slope in the street and finishing as a sharp edge between two streets. That initial triangle is where the kitchen is and then you have two rooms on different levels. The exposed stone walls are whitewashed, ceiling beams are exposed and generous cushions mean you may eat and drink with comfort.
And with some class as well. So now, do go down and try that Hederman pizza. Or of you prefer meat to fish, then maybe the one featuring Jack McCarthy’s black pudding is for you. It will be for me, next time I visit. Margherita! Look what you started.
|Fresh local seafood risotto|
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
The little café at the back of the shop in Ballymaloe may not be the best known spot in the place but it sure is one of the busiest. And like every other part of Ballymaloe the meals produced here are top notch, as I found out during Friday's visit.
The main reason for travelling to the East Cork venue was to check out the shop for some items for the kitchen. The shop’s kitchen area has an extensive stock, everything from knives to cake tins, and there is also a textile and books area.
We got our bits and pieces and then lingered a while longer, adding to the purchases, in the food area which packs quite a lot, including Green Saffron spices and Badger and Dodo coffees, into a relatively small area. You may also shop online.
The time for lunch was at hand and we got a table in the café. It fills up pretty quickly so don't rely on getting a place. Still, if you can wait (check out that shop, maybe), lunch is served from twelve thirty to four.
The short menu is displayed on a blackboard and we both started with the Celeriac Soup (5.20) served with a small scattering of toasted hazelnuts and flat parsley. The nuts really added to the enjoyable soup, served in the distinctive blue and white Burleigh pottery (also on sale in the shop).
Main course for me was the Hot Sandwich of Black Forest Ham and Comté Cheese on toasted Arbutus Bread with salad and pickles (9.90). CL picked the Hederman Smoked Mackerel, with salad and homemade mayonnaise and served on brown bread (9.50).
Both were well presented and each was terrific. I totally enjoyed my combination of flavours and textures as did CL. Must say that the salads in particular were just fantastic, great mix and dressing. Would love to see the Café take on Glucksman’s Fresco Bistro in a Niçoise salad competition!
A couple of coffees later and two happy customers, service was friendly and efficient, walked out as others eagerly walked in. It is that kind of café.
* Now you can sample the café on Fridays (from 7.00pm). There'll be casual eats to share: small platters, nibbles, wine, cava, sherry. No reservation needed. Keep an eye on their Facebook page.
Sunday, December 13, 2009
HEDERMAN’S SMOKED FISH
First came across Frank Hederman’s smoked fish when I bought some eel from his stall at the Farmers’ Market in Midleton a couple of years back.
They still do the Farmers’ Markets ay Cobh and Midleton and, in addition, can now be found in the English Market.
Called there today and bought some smoked mackerel, one dressed with a chilli flavour, the other with Piri Piri. Used them with beetroot in a starter. Lovely.
Check out my review of Hedermans Smoked Fish - I am cork - on Qype