Thursday, May 30, 2013

Things I Loved In May

Wow, it's the end of the month again (that means payday and holidays for me, thank heavens) so that can only mean that I'll be telling you about what I loved in May... and April because I got a bit distracted in work with travelling and catching the Lurgy of All Lurgies.  Anyway, sit back, pour a large drink because it's nearly the weekend and read on.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Review : Mourne Seafood Bar, Belfast

Sometimes you get a feeling about a place before you've even sat down and looked at a menu.  Often, it's a "oh lord, I'm not liking the look of this place and everybody seems miserable and oh, what have I done".  And then there's the Mourne Seafood Bar in Belfast.  Tucked away on a very innocuous side street mere steps away from Castle Street and Royal Avenue, this restaurant appears remarkably unprepossessing from the outside.  Inside is entirely a different story.  You enter through a single doorway into what appears to be a fish shop, with empty, briny scented tanks to your left.  Another door takes you into a dining room, packed with happy customers but the journey isn't over.  There's more to see upstairs.  We were very lucky to get a little table just opposite the kitchen so we could see what everybody was ordering before we made our own decision. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Babaduck in the Bray People

A lovely piece in our local paper the Bray People about my demo last week in St. Fergal's School.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The Day I Went Back to School with Innocent & GIY

Going to school is an experience you generally never want to repeat.  The smell of PE kit, the well intended knitting projects (it was a frog that doubled as a pincushion, honest), nature walks and generally wanting to keep moving to the next class, the next school and generally being older than you actually were. Looking back now after a few, ok a decade or three, years, I wonder why I was ever in such a rush. I went to a mixed primary school in Bray called St. Fergals which began as what would now be commonly known as a start-up in the two parochial rooms in Queen of Peace, where my Mum bribed me with a mini KitKat to get into class on time.  I actually really enjoyed school when I was little, particularly my teachers Miss Maguire, Mrs. Gillespie (who rocks into The Hubs in work every so often to tell him how lovely I was... I love her lots), Ms. Maguire who always caught me messing, and Mr. Dodd who went to school with my Dad and therefore had my instant respect. School back in the days of black and white was rather fun.  I always loved reading and singing, two things that make me happy to this day.  Cookery, to be honest, had no interest for me.  I was a child of the '70's where the most exotic thing we consumed was Vesta Risotto or Beef Curry.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Winner : Relish BBQ by Rozanne Stevens

Yes, I know it's been a while since I've brought you a competition but I want to make sure it's something I know you'll love.  Rozanne Stevens is a South African chef who has been putting up with our atrocious weather for over 10 years (why???).  She is a regular guest on the Pat Kenny show on RTE Radio 1, teaches cookery classes galore and in her spare time writes cookery books.  Her latest one is fantastic : called Relish BBQ, it's all about outdoor cooking without the sausages and frozen burgers.  I tell you this because I've actually eaten some of the dishes in the book, including Cheesy Chili BBQ Sweetcorn and Lee Ann's Broccoli and Bacon Salad.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Katsu Pork Curry

I was browsing aimlessly in the supermarket in that Friday night, work is over, I'm knackered, won't somebody please cook the dinner for me catatonic state that is all too familiar to a lot of you.  Suddenly, a white box caught my eye - it was a Japanese curry meal kit.  I knew that Japan had a version of curry that included a breaded chicken or pork cutlet and this was probably it.  The kit was a bit of a ripoff as it really only contained the curry sauce, some panko breadcrumbs and a portion or two of rice.  I had most of that lurking in the cupboards in Maison Babaduck, so I picked up a jar of Blue Dragon Japanese Curry Sauce instead.

Friday, May 10, 2013

3 questions spotlight: Simple ways aspiring British and Irish chefs can learn to cook

Whether you're new to cooking or a secret master chef just waiting to unleash your delicious recipes on the unsuspecting world of eaters, I believe that everyone should learn some basic cooking skills. If you've got a bit of time on your hands, what better way to fill it than learning to cook new and exciting recipes? There are many tools out there that will show you how to cook the perfect meal and, with no shortage of great courses in Britain and Ireland, there are so many different ways the absolute novice or the aspiring chef can learn to perfect their craft. This month, I caught up with lovemycourse to find out more about learning to cook and to get some ideas about the most popular cooking trends this year.

Monday, May 6, 2013

StinkyBurgers and Slaw

The sun, it shone. All weekend.  All Bank Holiday weekend.  If you're not Irish, you've no idea how monumentally lifechanging this news is.  Basically, we've been in hibernation since the end of October, superglued to radiators, shivering under two duvets and thinking that a winter wardrobe was basically going to be a year-round wardrobe.  Nobody wants to grill burgers or make fresh crunchy slaw when you're wearing a fleece and thermals.  We celebrated the start of Summer by going to the Zoo and wandering around waving at all the animals.  Red Pandas are my absolute favourite and I'd kill to get a cuddle from a baby one.  I know it would probably bite my face off, but that doesn't stop me hoping... Instead, we called to our friends after the zoo where I was cuddled, kissed and drooled on by nine month old baby James.  He's far cuter than any red panda, believe me.  Once we eventually got home, it was dinnertime and we were starving.  It was a Bank Holiday Burger day and I decided to make some really tasty burgers and a crunchy, tangy cabbage & carrot slaw, inspired by a recent quick lunch in Leon in Spitalfields Market.