Georgina Campbell's Cookery Feature - Delicious Dishes from the Food Depot

No better time than high summer (and the peak season holiday weeks) to seek out the best street food - and no better place to find it than the legendary Food Depot Gourmet Street Kitchen food truck that makes its home at West Cork Business Technology Park, Clonakilty on weekdays and then heads home to Courtmacsherry beach on Sundays.

Run by Diana Dodog - who became a household name in 2014 when she won MasterChef Ireland - and her husband Mike O’Donovan, this West Cork mobile food kitchen has a huge following and (as we’ve been proud to acknowledge at our annual Awards - GCGuides Street Food of the Year 2018), their popularity is very well deserved.

Great taste is the key to success when it comes to street food and there’s no shortage of that at The Food Depot Gourmet Street Kitchen, where customers happily queue to bag the day’s treats from a wide repertoire of dishes which may be ethnically diverse but they’re all based squarely on the best of seasonal local produce.

Dishes like steaming West Cork chowder, O’Neills 3-meat chilli (beef brisket, cheek and mince), Cajun chicken wrap and Veggie Delight (Grilled Hallumi Buddha Bowl) have ‘em coming back from more - plus gorgeous desserts and home bakes, and terrific West Cork coffee.
And happily Diana has shared her terrific and very diverse recipes in an excellent hardback book, Food Depot Gourmet Street Kitchen - Favourite Recipes from the Food Truck (€21). Perfect for relaxed family cooking and casual entertaining, it’s available from the truck and online from

Some lovely seasonal recipes to try now from the book are given below - and you can see Diana Dodog in action at the incomparable 10-day West Cork Food Festival 2018, as she will be collaborating with chef Martin Buckley at the excellent Lifeboat Inn in Courtmacsherry on Friday 7th September.

RECIPES from Food Depot Gourmet Street Kitchen:

 Pea & Mint Hummus
This recipe is a great summer addition. Perfect for those picnics in the park or dinners on the patio. Easy to transport, a light, fresh picnic hamper item. All your vegetarian friends will be happy to try something new and different. Plus it's quick to put together. It is a make ahead little dip, just get a nice loaf of sourdough and you are good to go!

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion chopped
2 cups of fresh or frozen peas
3/4 cup water
2 tbsp tahini (toasted sesame paste)
3tbsp fresh mint chopped
2 tbsp sour cream
½ tsp black pepper
1 pinch of salt to taste

Heat olive oil in a deep pan, add onions and sauté for 3-4 minutes on medium heat, until translucent, add peas and water, season and cook for 5 min.
Drain a bit of the water off the peas and onions. Reserve it, in case you need to add a bit of liquid at the end for the right consistency. Add all remaining ingredients to the food processor. Pulse until you have a rough purée. Serve chilled!

 Crab Fritters
Fluffy, light and delicious. The ultimate starter, very quick and easy to put it together. My love of crab came about when I moved to Ireland. Sweet, delicate and extremely rich. Crab sounds like a lot of work, but just buy the white crab meat if you are not up for breaking down a whole one. Serve as nibbles or serve it with a green salad.

Crab Fritters:
500 g crab meat
1 whole egg
2 egg yolks (reserve the whites)
2 tbsp self-raising flour
2 tbsp fresh dill or chives finely chopped

Preserved Lemon Mayonnaise:
1 cup mayonnaise
3 tbsp finely diced preserved lemon peel
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 pinch of salt and pepper

To Cook and Serve
2 egg whites, beaten until stiff
knob of butter
salt and pepper to taste

1. Preserved Lemon Mayonnaise:
Place the mayo, preserved lemon peel and lemon juice in a small mixing bowl.
Stir to combine then season with a little sea salt and black pepper. Refrigerate until required.
2. Crab Fritters:
Drain any excess liquid off the crab meat then place in a medium-sized mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, place the whole egg, 2 egg yolks and the self-raising flour. Whisk until smooth, then pour on to the crab meat. Add the dill and mix together along with some sea salt and black pepper. Refrigerate until required.
3. To Cook and Serve
Preheat your frying pan to medium heat. Fold the beaten egg whites into the crab batter. Add a little butter to your cooking surface, then spoon out the fritter batter to your desired size. Turn after a minute or so and remove when golden on each side and cooked through. They will puff up and smell divine.
4. Serve immediately with a dollop of the preserved lemon mayo on top, a pinch of sea salt and a grind of black pepper.


Hungarian Garden Pea Soup
A light vegetable soup often served in the spring or summer as a starter, spiced with paprika and fresh parsley. It is my all time favourite soup and symbolises summertime, using all fresh vegetables from the garden. We would pod the peas in the morning with grandma sitting on the steps in front of our kitchen door while the sun heats up our bodies. All veggies are covered in soft warm soil, we wash them before taking all ingredients into the kitchen, ready for the pot. Nothing is more delicious for me!

400 g peas fresh or frozen
2 small onion finely diced
2 medium carrots diced
2 potatoes diced
1 large bunch of parsley finely chopped
2 pinches of salt and pepper
1 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp smoked-cured pork belly finely diced
2 garlic cloves sliced
1.5 litres water
1 tbsp Hungarian paprika powder

In a large pot gently fry the pork belly in 1 tbsp oil, add onions and garlic. Stir around till it just starts to develop a light colour.
Pull the pan off the heat, add the Hungarian paprika powder, combine. (The reason we take the base off the heat is so the paprika won't burn.) Add water and put it back on medium heat.
Add carrots and potatoes or any other vegetables that you like to use, cover and cook on medium heat until all vegetables just cooked. Then add peas. They only need 2 min to cook.
Finally add the freshly chopped parsley, check for seasoning and serve.

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