Gradually getting through the Observer Food Monthly – it’s like very good chocolate for me, not something to be gobbled down but, rather, to be savoured slowly! – and just came across a feature on Bill Hogan and Sean Ferry of the West Cork Natural Cheese Company, makers of the superlative Desmond and Gabriel cheeses. The cheese-making partners have been in conflict with the department of agriculture since 2002, when their cheeses, all made from raw, non-pasteurised milk, were impounded. They eventually won their case – but it was not without much difficulty and hardship. Read the whole story – The revolution will not be pasteurised – here and then take yourself down to your nearest cheesemonger and buy a large slice of Desmond and Gabriel in tribute to a couple of cheesemakers who fought back.
Trish Deseine is a familiar name in the food blogosphere – particularly to anyone who reads Chocolate and Zucchini – and this Ulster-born food writer is also very well known in her adoptive France. Last year’s publication of Nobody Does it Better: Why French Home Cooking Is Still the Best in the World, was her first major foray into the English-speaking world – her Boudin Noir aux Deux Pommes (Black Pudding with Apples and Potatoes) is one of those useful ideas that is cooked regularly in my house. Now her debut television series, Trish’s Paris Kitchen, starts on RTÉ One tonight at 7.30pm. I don’t know if the programme is going to be broadcast online just yet, although 4oD has completely spoiled me for watching TV on the web (thanks Suzy!), but you can catch Trish being interviewed on Corrigan Knows Food from last June and she was also being interviewed on Monday’s Today With Pat Kenny – scroll down and click on Shows from the past week on the right hand side.
If you’re anywhere in the Mallow area this coming Saturday, 5 April, you can catch the first Mallow Farmers’ Market in the wee courtyard outside URRU – the culinary store, deli and café where I work – from 10.30am to 1pm. Stalls that will be there include my favourite Fermoy Natural Cheeses, smoked fish from Geraldine Bass’ Old Millbank Smokehouse and herbs from West Cork’s Gairdín Eden, which supply the fantastic salad leaves that we sell in URRU. Hopefully the weather will stay fine!
In the “I wish I was still living in Dublin” category, check out the forthcoming evening of Italian food, wine and song organised by Greatfood.ie and the Italian School of Cooking for this Saturday night (29 March). Tickets for that are on sale at Greatfood2buy.com. Independent wine blog Sour Grapes – well worth taking a look at for some decent wine reviews – is organising a wine tasting event at Fallon & Byrne for 15 April. Sign up at Sour Grapes here.
Not having a TV, I’ve only just heard about Willie’s Wonky Chocolate Factory, a Channel 4 series about chocolate entrepreneur Willie Harcourt-Cooze and his dreams of growing, importing and manufacturing high-end chocolate products in England. Although there’s no video online, there is a selection of photos from each of the four episodes of the show, the last part of which was shown last night, alongside some of Willie’s recipes – I particularly like the Black Beans one. And make sure you don’t miss the feature on chocolate ad blasts from the past, including the caramel bunny, the Man from Milk Tray and – of course – “Ambassador! You are spoiling us”.
Eoin Purcell of Mercier Press in Cork (the same company, incidentally, that are publishing Kieran Murphy’s Ice Cream book) has set about putting together a collection of recipes of traditional Irish family favourites. Everyone is welcome to contribute recipes from their own granny – or granddad! – and Our Grannies’ Recipes will be published in October, with €1 from every copy going to Age Action Ireland. You can read more about it and take a look at the first few recipes here.
Congratulations to Lorraine at Italian Foodies – the winner of this year’s Best Food/Drink Blog at the Irish Blog Awards! Kieran of Ice Cream Ireland was also a winner, taking the Best Business Blog award. You can read about all the winners on Maman Poulet, herself also a joint winner in the Best News/Current Affairs category. Sounds like a good night was had by all!