Conchiglioni Butternut Squash “Al Forno”

Conchiglioni "Al forno"

I went for a walk last Sunday; “a walk?” says my alter-ego ” more like a freaking pilgrimage!”. Ok, ok, a pilgrimage so… I like to sleep with the window open, no matter what the season, how cold or windy the weather is, I listen to the sound – or rather the consequences- of our blue home rotating… I woke up and all was calm, the sky was blue and I found myself inextricably drawn outside, I wanted to feel it, be a part of it… I put my walking shoes on, and like “Travis” in “Paris, Texas”, I started to walk…

Continue reading “Conchiglioni Butternut Squash “Al Forno””

Boyne Valley Blue Fritter

DSC00033
Boyne Valley Blue Fritter, with beetroot leaves pesto and blood orange…

I have been living in Co. Meath since late 2002, “The Royal”, a County full of history, legends and myths. Home of some neolithic settlers, reminding me sometimes – and for obvious reasons- of the early art and petroglyphs both our cultures share. You probably heard of the cairns of Loughcrew, or maybe even Knowth and Dowth? But I am sure you have heard of Newgrange, Solstice and equinox sun beams getaway to the other world, another world. And right bang in the middle, lies the legendary Boyne River…

Continue reading “Boyne Valley Blue Fritter”

Chicory Gratin

dsc00099
Chicory Gratin

Here is a little chicory recipe to illustrate my previous post/ story called Chicory Endeavour ; the pun is in the fact that chicory is also known as “endive”; ok, ok, a bit far fetched maybe? Anyhow, I decided to make this recipe with a cheese we mature at work, called “15 Fields”, a raw milk cheddar from co. Waterford that we age for 6 to 8 months. It works really well in cheesy sauces, or like in this case, a rich Béchamel sauce, perfect for this French classic called “Gratin d’Endives”. It sometimes includes ham, but this time, I decided to leave it out. In pictures, and step by step, this is pretty much how it went… First, you need to gather your key ingredients:

Continue reading “Chicory Gratin”

Fried Polenta with Irish Cheddar, roasted Cauliflower and fresh Plum sauce

dsc00249
Grilled Polenta with roated cauliflower, Irish farmhouse cheddar and plum sauce

I wanted to do a little recipe to pay tribute to our Irish Farmhouse Cheddars; especially after visiting Derg Farm in county Tipperary last month, I wanted to do something a bit new and for everybody. I knew  that I had an organic cauliflower in the fridge, but I wanted to drift away – at least this time – from the usual gratin that I have previously made. It had to include Cheddar of course and I wanted to avoid a soup and toasties, even if they are delicious together. The idea came when I parked the car in the driveway; I discovered that I had bought some polenta a few month back and when I opened the fridge, I still had a lot of local plums a friend gave me… Click… Clock… Click… Clock…  I might have watched “Ready, Steady, Cook!” a bit too much during my early years in Ireland, but it delivered a lovely dish, vegetarian too, satisfying and for everyone to enjoy! And this, my friends, is how last night went…

Continue reading “Fried Polenta with Irish Cheddar, roasted Cauliflower and fresh Plum sauce”

Soup ‘n’ Groux

Soup and Groux
Soup and Groux

Bleedin’ wet and windy here today in Co. Meath, it hasn’t stopped for the last five days really! Even if Monday was erringly warm as I drove back from Dublin at 10:30 pm with 16c showing on the dashboard, temperatures are sliding back down to its seasonnal self. Time for a nice warming soup and a little something very few of you might know, “The Groux” ( to be pronounced like the loveable-despicable character “Gru”), a traditionnal buckwheat-like bread from north Brittany, oven cooked like polenta and then fried in butter, this time, I decided to bake them mixed with Gruyere cheese, looking like soft savoury biscotti … “Simples”!…Anyhoo, here it goes…

Continue reading “Soup ‘n’ Groux”

Cucumber and Kiwi Salad

If like me you feel a little fragile today, after watching the amazing win from the Irish team against France, during the Rugby world cup yesterday, I have a lovely little salad for you. Don’t knock it until you try it, it really works! I often have this for breakfast…

Cucumber and Kiwi salad
Cucumber and Kiwi salad

Cucumber and Kiwi salad

Continue reading “Cucumber and Kiwi Salad”

Leeks Vinaigrette

Leeks and poached egg vinaigrette
Leeks and poached egg vinaigrette

Well apart from our National anthems, Bro Gozh ma Zadoù (Old Land of My Fathers) and Hen Wlad fy Nhadau (Land of my Fathers), Breton and Welsh also share a love for the auld leek. My rare Breton name, meaning “The Lanky” appears for the first time in 1641 in Ergué-Armel near Quimper… Some say that we might have come from “The land of song”, like a lot of other aborigines from Ireland and England who made their way across to Brittany for a new life since the 5th century.

Continue reading “Leeks Vinaigrette”

Butter Beans Burger

Butter Beans burger with bue cheese sauce
Butter Beans burger with bue cheese sauce

When I was 12, my grandmother sent me a birthday card saying that I had finally reached the age of wisdom and reason… Yeah, about that, sorry to break it to you Gran, but I think it took a couple of decades before I got the message. Or did I? Immature with knowledge and experience it is then!

Continue reading “Butter Beans Burger”