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Donegal TDs in Food Coast Cook-Off Together!

Donegal Food Coast 'Cook Off' pitches two opposition TDs against each other!

Two local Donegal TDs are lined up for a face-to-face "Cook Off" on Friday 9th March, in Redcastle, Co Donegal, to help promote "The Food Coast - Donegal's Good Food Initiative".

The evening will begin with Community Chef Brian McDermott demonstrating a classic fish dish using Greencastle fish and other Donegal produce.  Next up will be TDs Pádraig MacLochlainn and Charlie McConalogue going head-to-head to cook a main course using local ingredients from a mystery basket of produce.  The Dáil deputies will be assisted by two students from the Letterkenny Institute of Technology's Tourism School.

Michael Tunney, CEO Donegal County Enterprise Board & Community Chef Brain McDermott
 TDs Pádraig MacLochlainn and Charlie McConalogue 
It isn't the first time the TDs have met in a competitive cooking event, with Charlie McConologue coming out on top on the previous occasion when he cooked an omelette in under 42 seconds.

The event is being organized by the Donegal County Enterprise Board food initiative "The Food Coast"  and will take place in Redcastle Hotel at 7pm as part of Enterprising Donegal Business Week 2012. The evening will finish with a tasting of local produce.

"It should be great fun" says Michael Tunney, Chief Executive of Donegal County Enterprise Board.  "Chef Brian McDermott always provides superb demonstrations that showcase local produce and we're expecting great things from Charlie and Pádraig".

Brian McDermott has achieved national recognition as The Community Chef where he works with community and sports groups to raise awareness of healthy food made from fresh local ingredients.  Cooking professionally for 20 years, Brian has worked in product development with Kerry Group before setting up his own award-winning restaurant "Finnegan's".

The Community Chef Brian McDermott  
He launched his first book, "Reunite with Food", in October 2011 and he has a weekly radio slot with BBC Radio.  The common theme of his work is using fresh local ingredients that help keep us all healthy and that support the local economy at the same time.

'The Food Coast - Donegal's Good Food Initiative' is a campaign to help establish Donegal as a county with a vibrant food culture and food economy.  The initiative has four main goals - to  encourage new food businesses, support existing food businesses, promote the sourcing of local produce and drive awareness locally and nationally of the fantastic food we have on our doorstep in Donegal.  The initiative is open to anyone with an interest in the County's food sector, from start-up businesses to part-time food producers, from on-farm artisan food producers to manufacturers, distributors, retailers and restaurateurs.

Organised by the Donegal County Enterprise Board

To attend the Free Cook-Off & Demonstration or for further information about Enterprising Donegal Business Week 2012, contact Celine Carroll, Donegal County Enterprise Board on 074 9160735 or email  Alternatively, you can visit the Donegal County Enterprise Board's website at and register online.

Don't forget to feed the fish at the bottom of this Post!

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The Irish Food Guide Blog includes news, foodie chat, recipes, award results, links and other general information on the Food & Tourism Industry in Ireland.

It is written & curated by Zack C. Gallagher, Donegal Town, Co Donegal, Ireland.

“My Blog is a slice of the Irish Food ‘Network’. I’m a Chef with over 30 years experience and also have a background in media. I’m passionate about Irish Food Tourism and I believe that a rising tide really can lift all boats!”

Supporting Irish Food created by passionate producers and encouraging the Irish food & hospitality industry to use modern social media methods to increase their business.

Zack is building a Food Tourism Network, with food tourism partners all over the island of Ireland, to connect guests with artisan Irish food producers, so they can experience the provenance and personality behind our Irish food Visit