Author: Caroline

Mallow Food Festival – Sunday 23 August 3

Mallow Food Festival – Sunday 23 August

I wrote last week about the smoked trout from Old Millbank Smokehouse in Buttevant. If you’re interested in picking some up, Geraldine will have her stall at the Mallow Food Festival on Sunday 23 August with plenty of trout, salmon and some of her fantastic pates and fishcakes. Many of my favourite traders will also be there, including Arun Kapil‘s Green Saffron, wafting gorgeous smells of curry down the street, Gudrun Shinick’s Fermoy Natural Cheese, the Baking Emporium (make sure you pick up a pack of their fantastic spelt cheese crackers) and skin care products that are good enough to eat from Shirley’s Herbal Care. There will also be baking from Nibbles Food Emporium, tasty snacks from Allan’s Crepes and Tom’s Sushi alongside a selection of ethnic foods from the Caribbean (The Joy Store), Lithuania (Vias) and Thailand (Thai Lanna).

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Old Millbank Smokehouse Smoked Trout and Lemon Pasta Salad

Old Millbank Smokehouse Smoked Trout

When we had the Mallow Farmers’ Market taking place outside Urru last summer, I never missed the chance to pick up a pack of Old Millbank Smokehouse hot smoked trout from Geraldine Bass. Saturday mornings in work were always busy so I had to watch for a gap between customers to make a dive out of the shop before all the good stuff was gone. Geraldine would also have her smoked salmon and, for a real treat, some very fine smoked salmon pâté but I always made a beeline for the trout, a much underrated ingredient and one that I’d pick any day over smoked salmon.

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Black Pudding and Foie Gras by Andrew Pern

Black Pudding and Foie Gras by Andrew Pern

From Burdass-Reared Wold’s lamb to Ampleforth Abbey Apple Tart Tatin, Andrew Pern’s Black Pudding and Foie Gras is as firmly rooted in the food of Yorkshire as his Michelin-stared establishment is embedded in the village of Harome. Andrew’s Star Inn is a 14th century country pub in North Yorkshire which opened 13 years ago. He laughs as he recalls that it all started with just three people – himself in the kitchen, his wife Jacquie working front of house and her mother behind the bar. Now they run a total of seven interlinked businesses in Harome, including self catering cottages, a deli and a butcher’s shop, employing some 120 people.

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The best chocolate cake: Chocolate Orange Spice Cake

Chocolate Orange Spice Cake

I’ve always liked to bake. As soon as I was old enough to co-ordinate reading recipes and using a wooden spoon, I was anxious for any cake-making excuse – and most of them involved copious amounts of chocolate. Over the years there have been many good chocolate cakes, from my early attempts using chocolate-flavoured cake covering and marg to (when I started paying for my own shopping!) butter and 70% dark chocolate. This cake, however, although it may not look like much, stands head and shoulders above the rest.

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Blackcurrant Almond Cake

When we bought the cottage, I was delighted to discover a threesome of blackcurrant bushes out in the back garden. I missed the first few years’ worth of harvest but this year managed to get enough to make this deliciously moist Blackcurrant Almond Cake.

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Playing gooseberry

Seventeen gooseberries does not a summer make but it’s just about enough for a Gooseberry Yoghurt Fool.

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How does your garden grow…organically?

Wet garlic

Last summer, when we had the Mallow Farmers’ Market running outside Urru, we saw a lot of Patrick Frankel, a local organic vegetable grower. When he started coming to the market he had just started producing vegetables on his family farm near Doneraile and customers were delighted with the early fruit of his labours: spring onions, yellow and green courgettes, an assortment of tomatoes, new potatoes, peas and, my favourite, mangetout. I bumped into him a few times at the Killavullen Farmers’ Market, always making sure to stock up on the mangetout – great shredded and tossed raw into salads or briefly steamed and served as a side – but hadn’t seen him around for a while so I was delighted to see that the North Cork Organic Group had organised a farm visit.