Are You Organising a Food Festival or Fundraiser and Need a Stage Kitchen? Visit Ken Maguire Demos!

Kenny Maguire Demos - Cookery Demonstration Kitchens, Sound and Visual for Fundraisers and Festival Events

Share This Story

Get your Hands on a new copy of "All in the Cooking"

For many decades, All in the Cooking was the go-to book for anyone studying Domestic Science/Home Economics in secondary school. 

First published in 1946, even today it is an absolute gem to add to any cookbook collection, where you can relearn all the classic recipes you perfected as a teenager. From classic sweet puddings to savoury sauces, a myriad of potato preparations to special “invalid cookery” dishes and the list goes on and don't forget that simply delicious old fashioned “Queen of Puddings” recipe!

This book was way ahead of it's time in regard to encouraging the use of local food at a time when tinned food and modern (for 1946) advertising was encouraging the use of easy-cook foods like tinned meats and pre-cooked meals. The book has attained near legendary status over the years. Chefs and students of Home Economics remember it well but nobody could get their hands on a copy! Until now...

O'Brien Press and Edco (The Educational Company of Ireland) have decided to re-publish this old cooking jem on the 7th September and it will make a wonderful addition to any cookbook collection! 

This new edition of All in the Cooking is the perfect gift for those who remember it fondly from their schooldays, and yet it remains an essential manual for the modern kitchen (including some ‘interesting’ recipes from days gone by!)

With a natural emphasis on local ingredients, All in the Cooking covers everything a home cook could want to make - from soups and sauces to fish and meat dishes, breads, cakes and desserts – and offers invaluable  instructions for handling ingredients, organising a kitchen and planning meals.

I've got my new copy and You can Pre-Order your copy now at but you better hurry up, I hear they're selling out very fast!



Female Food Entrepreneurs can apply for ACORNS fully funded business initiative

A recently launched ACORNS programme seeks early stage rural based female entrepreneurs in Ireland to participate in fully funded business initiative

Donegal Entrepreneur – Deirdre McGlone, owner of Harvey’s Point Hotel has been announced as one of the Lead Entrepreneurs for programme looking for 50 rural start-up female-led businesses
Deadline for applications is Friday 11 September

Applications are being sought for a new fully funded programme aimed at providing early stage female entrepreneurs living in rural Ireland with the knowledge, support and networking opportunities to advance the development of their businesses.
Entitled ACORNS - Accelerating the Creation Of Rural Nascent Start-ups - the programme is focused on unleashing the potential of female entrepreneurs living in rural Ireland who have recently started a business or who have taken concrete steps towards setting up a business. 
ACORNS is dedicated to seeking out and assisting up to 50 start-up female entrepreneurs living in rural areas as defined by CEDRA – the Commission for the Economic Development of Rural Areas. These are all areas of the country outside the administrative city boundaries of Dublin, Cork, Galway, Limerick and Waterford.
As ACORNS is fully funded under the CEDRA 2015 Rural Innovation and Development Fund through the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, there is no charge for successful participants.

Donegal based entrepreneur, Deirdre McGlone, has been announced as one of the Lead Entrepreneurs on the inaugural ACORNS programme. Deirdre McGlone has run Harvey’s Point Hotel located on Lough Eske, Co. Donegal for the last 26 years. Opening with 20 bedrooms, a restaurant and a small team, the hotel has seen phenomenal growth over the years. Today, the hotel boasts 64 suites and has recently launched ‘The Lodge @ Harvey’s Point’, located on the grounds of the hotel for special interest groups.
In January 2015, Harvey’s Point was voted Number One Hotel in Ireland in the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice awards for the third successive year. The multi award winning hotel was also ranked No. 8 in Europe and No. 23 in the world. With 120 people employed in Harvey’s Point, Deirdre and her team continue to push the boundaries as an industry leader, keeping hotel standards at the highest level.

The ACORNS initiative is an excellent opportunity for female Food Entrepreneurs 

To qualify for consideration, applicants must have recently set up a new business (no earlier than the 9th of July 2013), which they either own or part-own. Those who are not already trading must be actively planning a new venture and have a clear idea of what they want to achieve. If they are not already trading, activities such as organising the start-up team, looking for equipment / facilities, saving money for the start-up or writing the business plan would all be considered as active commitments to starting a business. 

There is no restriction on the sector in which the new business is focused. However, the selection process is competitive. The deadline for applications from interested candidates is Friday 11 September and the pilot programme will begin on the 30th September, at the ACORNS residential Development Forum in Portlaoise, Co. Laois. 

The ACORNS initiative will consist of interactive round table sessions that are facilitated by other female entrepreneurs who have started and successfully grown businesses in rural Ireland and believe in the philosophy of entrepreneurs supporting entrepreneurs
They include:
·         Alison Ritchie, Polar Ice, Laois
·         Anne Cusack, Critical Healthcare, Westmeath
·         Anne Reilly, Paycheck Plus, Louth
·         Caroline McEnery, The HR Suite, Kerry
·         Deirdre McGlone, Harvey’s Point, Donegal
·         Mary B Walsh, Ire Wel Pallets, Wexford

Known as ‘Lead Entrepreneurs’, these role models will work in a voluntary capacity to facilitate monthly round table sessions with up to eight participants. These will take place once a month over six months and will address enterprise challenges and support participants to consider how best to develop and advance their early stage businesses for sustainability and growth.

Paula Fitzsimons, Deirdre McGlone, Alison Ritchie and Mary B. Walsh at the launch of ACORNS

As past participants of another female entrepreneurship initiative – the Going for Growth programme -all of the Lead Entrepreneurs have first-hand experience of the round table peer learning approach and of its benefits. 

Paula Fitzsimons is the Founder of Fitzsimons Consulting, the company awarded the contract to run the ACORNS programme and which also runs the Going for Growthinitiative. She says:
 “I believe that significant untapped entrepreneurial potential exists among women in rural Ireland and the objective of ACORNS is to equip these early stage entrepreneurs with the appropriate knowledge, confidence and networks to successfully start and develop sustainable businesses.  Working with the team of volunteer Lead Entrepreneurs and with the support of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and CEDRA, I am convinced that we can harness that potential for the good of the individuals concerned, their local communities and the wider economy.” 
A report from the Commission for the Economic Development of Rural Areas (CEDRA) contained a recommendation that a Rural Innovation and Development Fund should be developed to support “innovative, small scale pilot initiatives that explore the diverse range of potential identified through the CEDRA process”.

Simon Coveney TD, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine provided for the setting up of this fund in his 2015 budget allocation and, commenting on the ACORNS programme, he says: “I am delighted that this initiative is getting underway. Job creation is a huge focus for this Government and I hope that by targeting female entrepreneurs, who are currently under represented in start–up enterprises, that we can increase the level of business and employment generation in rural areas”

Minister of State for Rural Affairs,  Ann Phelan TD, who is responsible for the implementation of the CEDRA Report,  says that this CEDRA initiative aims to encourage a stronger level of enterprise development in rural areas and adds “Rural women’s entrepreneurship clearly represents an untapped potential and can contribute significantly to our economic growth. For many rural women, entrepreneurship is part of a broader livelihood strategy, often undertaken initially on a part-time basis. Emerging businesses need support to flourish. I am a strong believer in the value of mentors and in the importance being able to turn to experienced and trusted advisors from a variety of industries for advice and support”. 

Female entrepreneurs interested in applying for the ACORNS programme can access information and register their interest at
Application forms will be sent back to interested applicants immediately.

The closing date for the receipt of completed applications is Friday, 11 September 2015


Irish Great Taste Award Winners 2015

Great Taste 3-Star Awards Winners for Ireland

Seven Irish Food Producers have come out on top with the coveted 3-Star Allocation, in this years' Guild of Fine Foods Great Taste Awards for 2015, which were just announced today. The winners are:

Cuinneog Irish Farmhouse Country Butter 

Cuinneog Ltd

Cuinneog has produced the finest quality Irish Farmhouse Country Butter and Natural Buttermilk for the past 25 years. Their butter is produced with pasteruised cream, a little salt and time. It is a true 'country' butter which gets its distinctive flavour and texture from the slow traditional production process. The cream is slowly heated and fermented, then churned in the traditional way. The butter is then shaped, cut & wrapped by hand.

Java Republic Rwandan 

Java Republic is an independent Irish-owned company founded in 1998 by David McKernan. David set up the business to take advantage of a gap in the premium coffee market in Ireland. Their Rwandan Coffee is described as "a Light Roast Coffee with a milk chocolate and woody body. Hints of peach and mandarin give this coffee a fruity finish that is fresh on the palate".

James Whelan Beef Dripping 

Having their own farm, abattoir and shop to sell their beef, allows James Whelan Butchers to give people that essential element of trust that consumers today require when they buy meat in-store or online. Their Beef Dripping is a great product utilizing the animal fat rendered from the beef carcass. Similar to lard, beef dripping is used in cooking and makes amazing chips and is a great alternative to goose fat for roast potatoes.

Quinlan's Smoked Irish Organic Salmon 

Quinlan's Kerryfish

With over 60 years of experience the Quinlan family have become eminent artisan producers of Organic Oak Smoked Irish Salmon. After careful preparation of the each Atlantic Salmon, they use native Irish oak wood chippings to create Organic Smoked Salmon with a truly brilliant flavour, texture and taste. Their Organic Oak Smoked Irish Salmon has achieved a reputation amongst connoisseurs of good food for the excellence of its flavour and for its consistent quality.

Quinlan's Smoked Irish organic Salmon cured with Irish Atlantic Sea Salt 

Quinlan's Kerryfish
Quinlan's Kerry Fish use unique smoking technique extracts distinguished flavours from Salmon.

Bewley’s Fairtrade Special Blend Tea 

Bewley's Tea 

This award winning tea is sourced from a single tea garden east of the Rift Valley high on the slopes of Mount Kenya. It is refined, elegant and golden with a delicate flavour. Expertly blended by their Master Blender, it’s brimming with distinctive aromas and flavours. The Fairtrade premium Bewley’s pays helps farmers to make a vital contribution to their families, local communities and the natural environment.

Ballyhoura Cep Oil 

Ballyhoura Mountain Mushrooms

Ballyhoura Mountain Mushroom are an Irish grower of specialist mushrooms including Shiitake, Oyster, Eryngii (King Oyster) Golden Oyster, Rose Oyster, Lions Mane "PomPom", Velvet Pioppino & Nameko. They also produce a range of  award winning speciality mushroom products including Marinated Oyster & Shiitake Mushrooms, Mushroom Soups, Wild Mushroom and Oyster Mushroom Pate, the Cep Oil, Mushroom Ketchup, Mushroom Seasoning Powders & Dried Mushrooms.

Ballyhoura Mushroom Vinegar 

Lucy and Mark produce a great range of marinated Oyster Mushrooms, Shiitake or Eryngii Mushrooms blanched in local Irish Cider Vinegar marinated in Extra Virgin Olive Oil with chilli, garlic and fresh homegrown herbs.
On top of that, Ballyhoura also supply a range of foraged Wild Irish Foods including Wild Mushrooms (Chanterelles, Ceps, Hedgehog, Saffron Milk Caps, Blewits, Chicken of the Woods, Hen of the Woods), Wild Garlic, Three Cornered Leek, Sorrel, Wood Sorrel, Wild Strawberries and Burdock.

The FULL LIST is Irish 3-Star, 2-Star and 1-Star WINNERS can be seen the special Irish winners section of the Great Taste Awards website HERE

There were Three 3-Star Winners in Northern Ireland:

And the full list of Northern Ireland Winners of 3-Star, 2-Star and 1-Stars can be seen HERE

Congrats to all the winners!

The Wild Atlantic Way is the world's Longest Coastal Route