Category: Do

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EBBP#5 – the parcel arrives…with a warning!

The contents of my parcel, courtesy of the Little Sister's mobile phone Being the last day at work before a Bank Holiday weekend, Friday was terribly busy – but considerably brightened up by the arrival of my Euro Blogging By Post parcel from Sweden! Once goods inwards got round to delivering it to my desk, I resisted the temptation to open it immediately and tucked it safely under my desk (sneaking looks at it all the time!) until it was home-going time…only to discover that it was too heavy to carry for 30 minutes on a too-warm summer’s evening. Luckily, the Boyfriend and I were able to call into the office on Saturday morning before we headed down the country for the weekend. I ended up opening it at home with the Little Sister, who got me out of my digital camera-not-working dilemma by using her phone to take the photo of “Swedish summer treats” illustrating this post.

3

EBBP#5 – The Taste of Summer

Olivado Avocado Oil from New Zealand One of the (very) many events organised by fellow food bloggers is a series of regular parcel exchanges. Last year in New Zealand I thoroughly enjoyed participating in Blog By Mail 2 and now I’ve gotten involved in Euro Blogging By Post #5, this round of which is being run by Jeanne over at the London-based Cooksister blog. Jeanne picked “The Taste of Summer” as her theme so I’ve assembled a parcel along those lines with a (slight) emphasis on Irish products.

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Restaurant Review: Mackerel, Dublin

Fantastic fish Thursday was a searingly hot day in Dublin and, even come evening time, there was little respite from the heat in the city center. Sun-warmed crowds pooled outside bars and restaurants, Mediterranean-style. It was not an evening to be indoors so, when the Boyfriend and I arrived for a 7.30pm booking at Grafton Street fish restaurant Mackerel and I spied seats outside on the narrow balcony, we grabbed them as soon as we could hot-foot across the room.

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Summertime in Dublin

Blazing Salads' fantastic breads Ireland has recently been going through a spell of glorious weather with near-constant sunshine and temperatures in the mid to late 20s and so I’ve not stepped near the kitchen for the last while. Cooking is mostly out of the question and baking has been abandoned for the moment – very little Brown Soda Bread gets made these days! – as our kitchen is just too small to cope with the heat of the cooker and/or oven. Meals at home are mostly light salad affairs or, given half a chance on these long, warm evenings, consist of picnics eaten while sprawled on the grass in one of our local parks.

Food at festivals – or lack thereof! 0

Food at festivals – or lack thereof!

I’m at two-day Irish music festival Oxegen this weekend, although fortunately – considering the rain and muddy conditions in Punchestown racecourse yesterday – not camping. The less said about food there the better! Normal service will resume next week.

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Lashings and lashings of ginger beer

Bundaberg - now in Ireland! None of the much loved Enid Blyton‘s Famous Five books that I read as a child were complete without a picnic – ham rolls, hard boiled eggs, slabs of fruit cake, tinned pears and, of course, lashings and lashings of ginger beer. The only kind of ginger drink that I came across in Ireland was ginger ale, ginger beer’s much sweeter and less spicy sibling. I wasn’t too impressed.

Thoughts elsewhere on Taste of Dublin 2

Thoughts elsewhere on Taste of Dublin

I have to agree with Ice Cream Ireland‘s comment on the incongruous presence of Starbucks at last weekend’s Taste of Dublin. It’s difficult to see what they have to do with food at all and in Dublin in particular. RTÉ 2FM DJ Rick O’Shea also writes of his experiences at A Taste Of Dublin (Or Two, Or Three…. Maybe Dessert Too…) and there’s debate over at the forum on Ernie Whalley’s forkncork.com. While you’re there, it’s worth taking a look at the conflicting opinions on Fallon & Byrne.

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A sunny afternoon at Taste of Dublin

Taste of Dublin logo Friday afternoon was a good time to be at the inaugural Taste of Dublin event as blazing sunshine encouraged a cheerful and good humoured crowd to linger, sample and wander around a Dublin Castle courtyard crowded with stands and stalls. My €35 ticket (I managed to keep the dreaded Ticketmaster booking fees to €2 by buying from the Ticketmaster outlet in Stephen’s Green Shopping Centre) entitled me to €20-worth of florins, the festival currency, but the sky was the limit as soon as you set foot inside the event areas. With sample signature dishes priced from €5 to €8, that €20 didn’t last long and I’ve even read of people spending another €70 on top of that. I was well behaved though – after spending my first €20, I just bought €5 extra – and, although portions were less than generous, I would have been hard pressed to find something I really wanted to spend more on.