The suspense was growing. There is an element of hope in cooking an upsidedown cake at the best of time but cooking one for a demonstration in front of 35 members of the Glenroe Ladies’ Club was, perhaps, asking for trouble. Throw in anirregularly used gas oven – I live in a world of electricity, rarely cooking on gas – and a demonstrator who, while distracted, managed to turn the oven off instead of up (ahem) and you’re adding a whole new layer of problems to the mix!
As reported in The Avondhu, our local paper:The days are getting colder, nights are drawing in and it’s time for some warming homecooked meals. Fancy trying out a few new tastes and flavours? Have you ever wondered what to do with butternut squash or sweet potato? Wanted to try making a Moroccan Tagine but not been sure of what it involves?
“Try not to drool too much!” That was the Husband’s parting shot as I left the cottage, en route to interview Willie Harcourt-Cooze at the Temple Bar Chocolate Festival on Saturday. It’s not that I have the habit of going weak at the knees with my interviewees, no matter how charismatic – while at Savour New Zealand I managed Anthony Bourdain without so much as a missed heartbeat – but the Husband knew how much Willie’s Channel 4 programmes had drawn me in, had witnessed my initially fruitless search for the 100% cacao bars in Ireland and had sourced a very well-received stash of those and the just-released chocolate bars for my birthday.
Coffee and cake – kaffee und kuchen – can you think of a better thing to warm you up on a bracingly cold Berlin afternoon? Over the course of ten days in Germany there were a lot of stops with Little Missy for a variety of sweet treats – and a lot of walking to compensate! Herself, myself and the Husband were staying at an apartment in the Friedrichshain district so, with the Husband gone from early to late on his course, LM and I set off to explore the city together. Mornings she slept then, as soon as she cocked an eye, she was scooped up, wrapped warmly, landed in the pushchair and we took off.
A perfectly seared scallop and a mouthful of Asian ‘slaw, some crispy chilli squid on a sesame fried ricecake, a cone of battered smoked haddock with chunky chips and homemade tartare sauce, barbequed prawns, a pile of pickled seaweed alongside tuna carpaccio and fish pâté: it was a full-on seafood feast at the weekend’s Dingle Peninsula Food and Wine Festival.
The An invitation to participate again in the judging of the Blas na hÉireann National Irish Food Awards in Dingle on Friday gave me the opportunity to discover a range of new products – as well as stick around for the rest of the weekend’s Dingle Food Festival festivities! This year’s judging was quick and efficient as the initial judging at UCC had slimmed almost 800 entries down to three in each category; all we had to do, in a series of blind tastings, was choose the gold, silver and bronze winners.
The Blas na hÉireann National Irish Food Awards have announced the shortlist for 2009. The products in each of the 28 categories – ranging from soups and cheese to biscuits and sausages – were chosen from a blind tasting of almost 800 entries, which must have been a whole lot of fun for the first round of judges!