Showing posts from January, 2012

Wine & Alcohol - A love affair from tempestuous to appreciative

This is my little story on all things alcoholic and how I have learned to appreciate wine. I remember from a very young age first having wine with our Sunday lunch. It would always be a treat and happen every so many months. Now I must qualify it would not be the best of wine it would be Liebfraumilch, Blue Nun, Black Tower or Hock. I think I liked wine so much because of its inherent sweetness, which is down I suppose to the wine my parents would buy or at least my mum would buy. My mum is not a fan of dry wine and if she so happens to buy one or is served one out comes the bowl of sugar to sweeten it up,  in fact when I was kid I would do the very same, kids and sweets etc. 

I think being introduced to wine and not only alcohol from an early was very good for me despite the following account. My dad would regular give me sups of his beer or serve me up a little shandy to have, this led me to enjoy the sweet taste of a shandy and I would drink copious amounts of Club Shandy or Bass …

Cup - Dublin - Coffee Challenge / Mission Week 4

Well then here it is in my opinion Cup is one of the best cafes in Dublin and serves up an all round coffee/lunch experience. Cup is two weeks old and is situated here on South Leinster Street. I believe they work in conjunction with the guys at 3FE. 3fe supply the Hasbean coffee that Cup use. Firstly I love the decor its so cool and modern, I especially love the lights above the tables. My first visit was on Tuesday, everyone at Cup seems so friendly and welcoming, the staff genuinely look happy to be working at Cup. I decided upon on getting a large cappuccino and sausage bap.

Oh man it was good! the coffee was gorgeous dare I say better than some of the coffees I have had at 3fe(I still love 3fe :) they are my weekend cafe). As for the bap it was gorgeous, the bread was so fresh and I loved sausage with carmelised onion inside, I could have easily eaten a second one.
After Tuesday I knew I had to come back here, well I was back on Thursday for more. This time I had 2 cappuccinos, …

Chocolate Chip Cookies

As part of my baking extravaganza last weekend I made these chocolate chip cookies, they went down really well :). Thank you goes to the Curvy Carrot for this recipe.

2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 bag (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat the oven to 180c/350f degrees.
2. Line baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and baking soda; set aside.
4. In the bowl beat the butter and sugars together on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
5. Add the salt, vanilla, and eggs, mixing well until thoroughly combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
6. With your whisk on a low speed, add the flour mixture, mixing until combined.
7. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the chocolate chips until e…

*Updated* Rigby's Deli - Upper Leeson Street Dublin

Of late I have seen a lot of chatter surrounding Rigby's Deli. What spurred me on to go was the write up on, so I went in search on Monday lunchtime. To my delight it was a hop skip and jump from where I work, this is very bad cause this place is gonna be tempting me every workday from now on. Anyhow as I said I stopped in and loved everything about the place, the outside is so cool, the Rigby's sign is also written in forks, knives and spoons. When you go in ( well for me ) I actually felt like I was in a New York style deli, there is a very serious kitchen right at the front door where you make your take away order , there is also however some seats to the back. The food looks so good and the bread is amazing looking, it comes from the Bretzel Bakery over on Camden Street.

After much deliberation I decided to go with a fish finger roll, a very posh one at that on a beautiful wholemeal 12 inch roll with mature cheese, baby leaves and I think a beetroot relish. Ser…

Fafies - Coffee Challenge / Mission Week 3

My coffee mission is now in to its 3rd week but its becoming coffee and pancake mission. Last week we had Moloughneys with coffee and buttermilk pancakes, now the same this week. Fafies is located on Lower Kevin St. Dublin. It is primarily a Creperie so technically it isnt a cafe but still its my mission my rules. Fafies is quite small inside so you may need to wait a few mins for a seat depending on the time of the day you arrive.

Anyhow the coffee here is damn fine brown stuff, and the pancakes are equally as good. The good thing aswell about their pancakes is that they are made from buckwheat flour which is gluten free if you are a Coeliac. I have been here admittingly a few times over the years and its always really good, they always produce great food, so definately recommend Fafies. They are run be some lovely people also.

Thanks for reading


John Street Deli Limerick - Breakfast time

For so long I have wanted to go to the John Street deli, it's been a long an arduous battle finally getting the opportunity to visit here. We to need to go back 4 years, when I first started going to breakfast with my mate Damo , we would often meet up for Saturday morning brekkie in Limerick city, going for coffee and sausage rolls. Then all our worlds came crashing down when we both had to move to Dublin, so with no Damo in Limerick on weekends especially when I came home I ended up going for breakfast with my brother Steve and his girlfriend Sarah.

We decided on somewhere new, and that was Frenches, and 3 years on its still our go to place for breakfast when I am home. HOWEVER, that all changed this weekend for the first time since I moved away, the tradition was broken when I suggested a visit to the John Street Deli. Lets just say it wasn't welcomed but I want change and now was the time to perform the breakaway to the disdain of our little breakfast club. I digress, we …

Tarte Au Citron

Yesterday I wracked my brain as to what to make for Sunday lunch dessert for my family in Limerick. I am trying at the moment to branch out a little bit in what I make and what recipes I can test out. I looked at making, cakes, pies, fools every manner of dessert and finally settled on this sumptious Tarte Au Citron that I found here on Poires au Chocolat's blog, which was adapted from a Marco Pierre White recipe written for The Times.

Tarte Au Citron

For the Pastry:

225g plain flour
pinch of salt
150g unsalted butter, cold
75g icing sugar
2 egg

For the Filling:

3 large unwaxed lemons
4 eggs
1 egg yolk
150g caster sugar
200ml double cream


1) Cut the butter up into cubes and rub in to the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs. The key when making pastry is to always use the tips of your fingers, when you have made the pastry and look at your hands they should never have flour on your palms. Add the salt, icing sugar and two eggs ( whisked briefly in a cup beforehand), bring th…

Lunchtime @ Doheny & Nesbitt - Baggot St - Dublin

Dohenys is great old pub on Baggot St that I absolutely love. When I first started going out with Joanne she was so envious of me working over near Dohenys as she used to always go for lunch here when she worked in the area a few years ago.

Well after all her promotion of the place ( in fact she does that alot, she is a one woman promotion machine for the Port House and La Tasca) I decided to pay this place a visit. I was not disappointed , I ordered shepherds pie and a salad, and both were very tasty. I now count Dohenys as one of my favourite lunch time places in Dublin and one of my favourite places to eat shepherds pie, you will always leave here happy.

Thanks for reading,


Chicken Wings who wins?

I had never tasted wings up until maybe 5 years ago when myself and few friends went to Krakow, and since then wings have become one of my favourite foods to have. In Dublin there are two establishments that serve up amazing wings, "The Elephant and Castle" in Temple Bar and "Tribeca" in Ranelagh. The question is though which is the best?

1) The Elephant & Castle

Ok so as you can see the wings come with two sticks of celery and some blue cheese dip. I always discard the blue cheese dip , it does nothing for me personally , this is all about wings! Invariably they come in a rich buttery hot sauce with some added vinegar to accentuate the tang of the hot sauce. Elephant & Castle wings are slighty smaller than Tribeca and are always that bit hotter. When you walk in to Elephant & Castle , pretty much everyone is eating wings, and when they arrive at my table I am like a pig in a feeding frenzy, they are insanely good. I always hope aswell that Joanne orders…

Moloughneys Clontarf - Coffee Challenge / Mission Week 2

Week 2 of the challenge for good coffee saw me and Joanne pay a visit to Moloughneys in Clontarf for our breakfast. If you know the area its right beside the Spar shop. Joanne has been talking for a while at how good this place actually is, especially for pancakes. With me being a self confessed pancake fiend with my fellow fiend Sarah ( my brother's girlfriend ) judging the pancakes we get every weekend I am down in Limerick at Frenches cafe, its only right I test Moloughney's pancakes out.

Anyhow I digress, would Moloughneys pass both my strict pancake and coffee tests? Moloughneys is very cool inside, it has dark wooden furniture and fittings with stone walls and has lovely community vibe to it. We are seated and I order the buttermilk pancakes with icing sugar and lemon, Joanne orders the small traditional breakfast, not forgetting my coffee! The coffee arrives first, its really good strong black coffee, nothing that would set the world alight but enough to wake me up, an…

Buttermilk Chicken

This Saturday Joanne decided that she was cooking for me and for so long she has been telling me about Buttermilk Chicken her sister Karen makes. Well Karen told Joanne how to make it and by god did she surpass herself, it was insanely good! Its basically the following recipe below:

Ingredients :

Chicken Breast (cut into 3/4 fillets)

1 Litre of Buttermilk

Plate of Seasoned Flour ( Flour with Pepper & Salt )

Sunflower Oil


1) Dip chicken in the buttermilk

1) Then dip chicken in flour

2) Dip back into buttermilk

3) Coat again in the flour

4) Fry until golden brown

Its that simple, it was amazing its like the best KFC you have ever had. She also made a gorgeous simple salad with roasted potato wedges coated in "Schwartz Garlic Spuds" displayed below which were actually lovely in comparison to other wedges you can buy frozen. The meal was excellent and she constantly tells me she cant cook its all flipping lies , this chicken was literally finger licking good.

Farnham Estate - Evening Meal

Back in August of last year myself and Joanne had an excellent weekend in Farnham Estate in Co. Cavan. Its a beautiful spa run by Radisson, it was to celebrate our 1 year anniversary, yes yes we are saps when it comes these sort of things :).  Anyhow as part of the deal an evening meal was included. For starters I ordered smoked salmon followed by herb crusted cod for mains, Joanne ordered roast red pepper soup and steak for her mains.

I have to say I really enjoyed the salmon, and it came with a gorgeous celeriac salad. Joanne also liked her soup, it was flavoursome and had a good consistency to it.

Next up was our mains, my fish was beautifully cooked and came with nice tomato sauce, all very retro but well crafted food. Joanne's steak was goregous with such a good pepper sauce it was so creamy and rich, only thing I couldnt understand was the ugly placement of tomato on top of the steak. All in all though it was fabolous meal. We didnt opt for dessert as we were both full :)


Artisan Bread

I searched the internet all week for a bread recipe I wanted to make on the  weekend as I had a box of yeast and strong flour I had bought last week for Pizza I made down home in Limerick. I finally came across this recipe from Chef Dennis. This recipe is fairly easy to follow and is the first time I decided to prove the bread overnight in the fridge, ordinarily I wouldnt have such time on my hands to allow this. Something I want to make clear from the start, you dont need a breadmaker ( waste of money in my opinion ) you only need your two hands.


384g cups of tepid water (37.0c degrees) 1 1/2 Tablespoons of Salt 1 /1/2 Tablespoons of Dry fast action yeast  830g of strong flour ( if using odlums its the one in the orange package) Flour to dust dough ball


1) Make sure the water is blood temperature and not too warm as you will kill the yeast. Mix the water, yeast and salt together , dont worry if the yeast does not dissolve as it will when making the dough.

2) Add th…

St. Anne's Park Red Stable Market

Not really a review but some pics of the market I was at today over in the Raheny/Clontarf area with Joanne.

I also bought some Dried Cranberries & Hazelnuts, this combo is bloody gorgeous, if you haven't tried it then you SHOULD!