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Friday, 11 July 2014

Take a Walk on the Wild Side in the Boyne Valley with Newgrange Gold

As a member of the Boyne Valley Food series, premium seed oil producer Newgrange Gold, will be hosting their first Farm Walk on the banks of the Boyne on Saturday 19th July at 10.00am.


You will be guided by taste this summer with a feast from the Boyne Valley’s best food producers as you wander through 9,000 years of history. As part of a series of over 30 up-coming events Newgrange Gold will host a walking tour on their farm. Taking in magnificent views of the Boyne, the ancient burial tomb at Knowth and the lush flat plain that makes the Boyne Valley and Newgrange Gold oil so special.


You will be guided by Jack and John Rogers and learn about archaeological finds at the sight and some of the significant history of Crewbawn during the 6th-8th Century. You will be brought on a guided tour of the northern bank of the River Boyne following a track down to the riverbank you will explore the old Boyne Navigation System that operated between Drogheda and Navan. There will be special mention of some of the local history, for instance the drainage schemes created in the 17th and 18th century at Gilltown House on the south side of the river.


You will explore the recently revealed souterrain at Crewbawn and hear the story of the Ancient Passage tomb at Newgrange & Knowth before gathering back at the house to explore the raw ingredients of Newgrange Gold oils; examining the seed, followed by a visit to the production facility and a demonstration of the pressing process, you will be brought on the journey from seed to soil to serving.

Cooking Demo by Marketing Guru, Foodie, Journalist & Blogger, Caroline Byrne
Next up as part of your culinary adventure you will be treated to a cookery demonstration by Caroline Byrne – foodie, journalist, blogger and Dublin editor of the McKenna Guides. Caroline studied ancient History and Archaeology before entering the world of Food. She will explore some of the more unique foods of the Boyne Valley which will be available to purchase from the pop-up shop on site for the day.

A truly magical place where history plays a large part, there is no doubt the soil and method of tillage in the fields across the Boyne Valley from Newgrange have given distinction to the taste and flavour of these wonderful culinary oils.

The Farm Walk costs €30 per person and includes a light lunch and refreshments. A 10% Discount for bookings of 6 or more is available.

For more information on Newgrange Gold Farm Walk call 041 982 4273 or visit www.newgrangegold.ie


The Best Homemade Jam in Ireland 2014 Competition

Entries are now being taken for a competition to search for the Best Homemade Pot of Jam in Ireland on August the 2nd as part of the Gorey Market House Festival in County Wexford.


Acclaimed food writer and TV personality Biddy White Lennon will be judging entries across 3 categories: 
Best Strawberry Jam
Best Raspberry Jam
Best Unusual Combination Jam


Biddy White Lennon, who has written many books about Irish Cooking, is Judging

There are prizes for each of these categories as well as a Jackpot prize for the jam voted ‘Best in Show’ which is sponsored by Greens Berry Farm. Other prize categories are best ‘Junior’ (16 years and under), best ‘Man-Made’ jam, sponsored by Morri & Kell & most artistic label, sponsored by The Gas Lamp Gallery. One prize will be awarded in each of these categories.


The Rules for the competition are as follows:
• All Jam must be home-made by the entrant
• Jam should be sealed using either a lid or cellophane and waxed disc
• Jam should be unlabelled – a label will be applied on entry and a duplicate issued to entrant
• Entries must be according to the categories given
• Individuals can have as many entries as they wish


Entries will be taken from Saturday the 26th of July at the following locations:
Gorey Market House Craft & Design Centre, Main Street, 
Gorey Gorey Civic Centre (Mon-Friday only).


Entries will be accepted up until 10.00am on August 2nd the day of the competition.


Judging will take part at Gorey Farmers Market, Esmonde St. on August 2nd and the winners will be announced at 2.00pm. Cost of a single entry is €2 or €5 per three entries.

For more information or to contact  Market House Craft & Design Centre, Gorey see https://www.facebook.com/goreymarkethousefestival 

Zack

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Win Ed Sheeran Concert Tickets with EWS Butchers

Eddie Walsh & Sons Butchers (EWS) was established on the 24th June 1962 by Eddie Walsh in the village of Ballintra, Co. Donegal Ireland and has now been family owned for 3 generations. They have two shops, the main butchers shop in Donegal Town and the original shop still operating in Ballintra.




They supply top quality award winning meats that are produced locally on their own farm and they specialise in rearing Aubrac Cattle, regarded as one of the best suited beef cattle to the hilly land of the west and northwest of Ireland and Donegal.


Eddie Walsh & Sons EWS Butcher shop in Donegal Town

EWS recently won the Best Burger in Ireland at the Craft Butchers of Ireland BBQ Competition and the family butchers also came away with the title of All Ireland BBQ Meats Champion at the event!




You can Win a Friday Night Concert Ticket to Ed Sherrin in the Oddessy Arena!

The Walsh family butchers are taking part in the new Homegrown Food Festival, to be held on 12th & 13th July, in the Aura Arena in Letterkenny. To celebrate this they are going to raffle 2 Tickets for the Ed Sherran Concert at the Odyssey Arena on October 9th and they will be holding the draw for the tickets at the Homegrown Food Festival in Letterkenny this Sunday 13th July.







To Enter the Draw 
simply go to the Walsh's EWS Butchers Stand at the Letterkenny Homegrown Food Festival and fill in an entry form OR Click the Like Button & Comment below to Like Eddie Walsh & Sons Craft Butchers (EWS) on Facebook:


CLICK LIKE & LEAVE A COMMENT to ENTER 


(You must leave a comment to be entered for the draw)

Remember the Draw will take place at the Homegrown Food Festival on Sunday evening,13th July.

The Small Print: If Ed Sheeran pulls out or the show is cancelled, the draw will be void and no correspondence will be entered into. No other prize is on offer nor will be offered in place of the tickets. The tickets are for two people only for Ed Sheeran at the Odyssey Arena on  October 9th 2014.

Best of Luck!
Zack

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Irish Food Bloggers Recipe Competition to Win a Trip to Chile, with Cono Sur Wine

Cono Sur, Ireland’s premium Chilean wine brand, is launching a search to find the ultimate dish to match their Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Noir. The entrant with the most votes in Ireland will travel with a friend, compliments of Cono Sur, to compete in the Grand Finale held in Paris in November.




You will compete with finalists from Finland, Sweden & UK to win the overall prize of a trip for two to Cono Sur Vineyards & Winery in the heart of stunning Chile!



From Monday 23rd June to Monday 11th August, Irish Food Bloggers all across the country can Log On to www.conosur.ie/blog (Food Bloggers from Northern Ireland go to www.conosur.com) and upload an Original Recipe that you feel pairs best with either the Cono Sur Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc or Single Vineyard Pinot Noir.


Voting is then open to the public from 18th August to 22nd September, when Cono Sur will select the top three recipes with the most votes from each country to go on to Round Two as semi-finalists.

For Round Two, renowned chef Christopher Carpentier will prepare each semi-finalist´s dish and select one finalist from each participating country. Winners will be announced and officially notified on 9th October.


For the Third and final round, the four international finalists will be sent to Paris for 14th-15th November to participate in the Grand Finale. Each finalist will prepare their dish for a panel of judges, including Cono Sur´s General Manager and Chief Winemaker, Adolfo Hurtado, as well as chef Christopher Carpentier.


Chef Christopher Carpentier from Santiago in Chile

The overall winner will be chosen and announced on the night, winning a fantastic trip for two to Chile.

TIMELINE:
June 23rd: Competition Opens
August 11th: End Date for submissions
August 18th: Public Voting Opens
September 22nd: Voting Closes
October 1st: Chef Christopher Carpentier begins cooking the top 3 entries from each country and chooses the best in conjunction with Cono Sur
October 9th: Finalists are notified and publicly Announced
November 14th: Grand Final in Paris

So... Irish Food Bloggers  Log On to www.conosur.ie/blog with your recipe Today!


The Cono Sur Single Vineyard range of wines was born from the idea of embodying the ideal vineyard site for each grape variety by optimizing the altitude, soil and climate conditions of the vineyard where it is grown, making each wine completely unique.

From voluptuous reds to fresh and aromatic whites, this range pays homage to Chile's diverse appellations. Each label contains a distinct block number, block name and valley in order to reflect the personality and uniqueness of the terroir where each was born.


Cono Sur Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir are available exclusively in the on-trade and specialist off-licences such as O’Briens Wines, nationwide; Mitchell & Sons, Dublin; Redmonds of Ranelagh, Dublin; Sweeney's of Glasnevin, Dublin; Jus de Vine, Portmarnock, Dublin; Bradley's of Cork; O’Driscoll's of Cork

Cono Sur is exclusively distributed by Findlater Wine & Spirit Group You can Follow Findlater on Twitter

Zack
(not paid for by the way - just a good competition!)

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Brendan O'Carroll gives broke Longford businessman €30,000 investment for new Irish Food Business

Some of life's wonderful generosity smiled today on a 61 year old businessman, Eddie Molloy, from Longford who spoke in an interview with comedian Brendan O'Carroll who was guest-hosting the Marian Finucane Show on RTE Radio1 this morning. The show was interviewing people who had lost their businesses because of the Irish financial crisis.



The Irish comedian is the writer of the hit TV series Mrs. Brown's Boys and also the new film version, Mrs Brown's Boys - D'Movie, which opened this week to rave reviews.

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The Longford couple had ran the local SuperValu and employed almost 50 people up until 2008. They sold that business and had invested in property - just before the Irish financial crash occurred later that year.  Their timing could not have been worse and the Molloys lost everything they had worked for over the years. "We are literally broke now" said Mr Molloy.

Over the next few years the 61-year-old businessman opened a total of three new shops in Longford town, including two newsagents, but they also closed as the recession bit into Ireland.




Eddie mentioned to Brendan O'Carroll that he had been working on a new Irish Food business venture that is unavailable in Ireland, but that he was receiving absolutely no assistance or credit from any of the Irish banks or financial institutions. He has been working and researching his new food product and that he has received very favourable interest in it from restaurants and hotels that he had approached with the idea.

Mr O'Carroll was so moved by the couple's story that in gratitude to the lucky break that he has received himself over the last year that he decided, live on the radio, to put his hand in his own pocket and offered the Longford man €30,000 of his own money as an investment in his new food business idea!

"I'll tell you what Eddie," said O'Carroll, "I'm very, very lucky. I had a movie open this week and it's gonna make me fortune! I'll put €30,000 quid in front of you and we'll see if that idea works."

As the businessman stammered with disbelief, Brendan O'Carroll added, "If we can make that idea work, you being 61 and me being 50-ish, we'll show exactly what two old men can do."

The show was later inundated with calls from listeners who were stunned with the generosity of Mr O'Carroll, who had shown himself to be a very capable and understanding interviewer even before this amazing act of kindness occurred.




Since the radio interview was broadcast on Saturday last, it emerged in some of the Irish press that Mr Molloy was living in what was described as a "palatial home" which includes a wine cellar and that he was being pursued by the Irish Revenue for business taxes owed. For most of those interviewed by O'Carroll on the radio show that morning, this was the same story over and over again and there are now many business people living in Ireland under the shadow of losing their homes because of what happened as a result of the Irish banking crisis.

Brendan O'Carroll acknowledged Mr Molloys tax problems on the radio the following day, apologising for the fact that his public offer of €30,000 investment had actually caused the family more heartache. The comedian said that this was not his intention and that despite the tax demand the Molloys might actually benefit from the publicity.

The Dublin -born comedian who employs five members of his own family in his hit TV series and in the new film, insisted his offer was still good saying, "I think he’s a good bet and if he’s not, sure, I’ll just get on the line with the taxman myself.”

He also spoke of the need for determination of people like Mr Molloy in helping to regenerate Ireland's economy by adding, "That’s really what’s going to get us out of this, the hope of people, people having a go."

You can Listen to Brendan talking to Eddie and offering him the €30,000 investment (audio courtesy of RTE Radio1) here:

Rewind to the Start to Listen - the portion of the interview
involving Eddie & Rosie finishes at 5:20 minutes


Zack

Sunday, 22 June 2014

French Toast or Gypsy Toast made with Duck Eggs

Ordinary plain white bread that is dipped in egg and milk and fried on the pan is called Gypsy Toast, French Toast, Eggy Bread, Pan Dulcis, Torrija, Fatias Douradas, Lost Bread and Pain Perdu. The name used today apparently comes from a New York innkeeper named Joseph French, who created a dish in 1724 and advertised it as "French's Toast". The printer made a mistake on his Menu and it became French Toast!

It's really simple to make and is a great way to get kids eating eggs. You can eat it with savoury or sweet additions or just with a knob of butter!





Traditionally French Toast is made from older or stale bread because it soaks up the egg mix better than when fresh, but you can use fresh bread anyway. When I was over in Norway last year one of the gourmet restaurants we were eating in served it up as a dessert with cinnamon-sugar and ice cream. Simple.




I picked up a half dozen lovely big free-range Duck Eggs at our local Leghowney Country Market yesterday, so I decided to make a big batch of French Toast with them. 

Funny thing is, the man who was selling the eggs had never heard of dipping bread into beaten egg and frying it! I was telling him how to make it and was astounded that he'd never come across it before. He was going home to make some straight after the market! So, here is my recipe for French Toast.


My Ingredients:
2 large Eggs (Duck or Hens eggs)
100ml / ½Cup Milk
12 Slices White Bread (more or less)
rapeseed oil or vegetable oil to fry

My Method:

1. Cut the bread into half slices. Beat the eggs and milk together in a bowl.



2. Heat the pan on a low heat with a tiny rub of oil covering the base of the pan. Dip the bread into the egg mix, turning it over to cover both sides and shaking off any excess. Place on the frying pan leaving a space between each slice.

3. Cook until golden brown (approx. 1 min) on each side. Remove from the pan and cover with a cloth to keep warm. Repeat until all the egg mix is used up.




You can eat French Toast with anything! Spread it with Butter, sprinkle it with a little Sugar & Lemon, serve it with Bacon, Maple Syrup, Honey, Cinnamon Sugar, Ice-Cream, Strawberry Jam and Fresh Cream or just plain! Yum!

Zack

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