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Lennons @ Visual - Carlow Town County Carlow Ireland
Author: Just Ask
Fans of the former Lennons Café Bar of Tullow Street in Carlow Town had to wait a long time to enjoy their wholesome food again – but it’s been worth it. Last winter Sinead Byrne and her son Ross, together with some of the old staff, moved into the spanking new Visual Centre for Contemporary Art & the George Bernard Shaw Theatre in the heart of Carlow Town - and both the restaurant itself and the venue that provides its stylish contemporary setting are proving a great asset to the town.
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Grilled Mackerel Fillets with Indian Spiced Potatoes and Raita
Author: Georgina Campbell
The Irish Heart Foundation, safefood and the HSE have joined together for this year’s Happy Heart Eat Out month, which runs in hundreds of participating restaurants, workplaces and communities across the length and breadth of the country throughout June. Carrying the theme, ‘For a Happy Heart…Think Small’, the campaign hopes to raise awareness of portion sizes when eating out, in addition to encouraging people to choose healthy options from menus. A new Happy Heart Eat Out recipe booklet incorporating tasty and healthy recipes will be available in June, free of charge.
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Smoked Salmon
Author: Special Irish Foods & People Who Make Them
Smoked salmon is a popular speciality food all around Ireland, and it is surprising how much its character can vary, in colour, texture and flavour. There tends to be a noticeable difference in texture between the muscular wild salmon (or farmed fish that have been raised in strong tidal waters offshore, eg Clare Island salmon) and salmon from inshore fisheries where the fish have less exercise, resulting in softer flesh. And, generally speaking, very orange flesh is likely to the result of additives to the feed of farmed salmon, making paler fish more desirable. But the smoking process also has to be taken into account and that varies a great deal from one smoker to another – each has their ‘secret recipe’, which makes the product unique.
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Egg
Author: In Season
Eggs are available all year, but their natural season is spring and this is a good time to remind ourselves to make the most of them, and to look at how this most versatile of foods works with other seasonal ingredients. The ultimate natural convenience food, eggs are perfectly packaged and easily stored, and they provide a reasonably priced source of protein so the basics of an easy, quick and nourishing meal are always to hand.
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Jamie Does... (Penguin hardback, 360pp, £26)
Author: Cookbook Reviews
Something different by way of book reviews this month, as an unusual and interesting collection of books has come our way. Firstly, there is Jamie Does…(Penguin hardback, 360pp, £26) which is, of course, the book accompanying Jamie Oliver’s latest TV series – and is a sign of the times, as it’s based on six places that can be visited quickly and cheaply from the UK (volcanic ash allowing).
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Harrys Bar & Restaurant - Bridgend County Donegal ireland
Author: Just Ask
The “Just Ask!” Restaurant of the Month winner for April is Harrys Bar & Restaurant in Bridgend County Donegal. Donal & Kevin Doherty and Raymond Moran operate this well-run bar and restaurant close to the Derry border with a real passion for the food of the area. There’s nothing they like better than shouting about it, so there won’t be much need for anyone to ‘Just Ask!’ when eating here – although they’ll ‘Just Love It!’ if you do, as their well-informed staff are just as enthusiastic about their food philosophy as they are themselves.
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Hearty Tuscan Bean Soup
Author: Georgina Campbell
With so many families now faced with reduced disposable income through wages cuts, redundancy and increased taxes, the Nutrition & Health Foundation (NHF) is asking people to see this as an opportunity to shop smart, cook smart and eat smart together, in order to establish a healthy diet for life for all the family - starting with Eat Smart Week (19th – 25th April). Now in its fourth consecutive year, this innovative initiative from the NHF aims to show that healthy eating is achievable for everyone, regardless of their cooking experience.
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The Country Cooking of Ireland by Colman Andrews
Author: Cookbook Reviews
An impressive book by any standards, this beautifully produced coffee table tome weighs in at 2.3kg and – thanks to Christopher Hirscheimer’s stunning photography – presents an extremely appealing, mainly rural, view of Ireland and the simple excellence that is our food culture at its best. Despite its size and weight, it’s an engaging as well as an informative read, successfully setting the renewed Irish respect for quality produce and simple cooking into a balanced historical perspective, with carefully selected recipes illustrating the point.
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Rhubarb
Author: In Season
Although usually used in sweet dishes, rhubarb is not a fruit but classed as a vegetable. It grows easily in Ireland and is still a familiar feature in gardens all over the country. It dies down in winter and now, as it begins to re-emerge for the new season (later than usual this year, due to the prolonged cold weather over the winter), the new stalks will be at their pinkest and most tender.
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Fermanagh Free Range Chicken
Author: Special Irish Foods & People Who Make Them
Kettyle Irish Foods is an innovative food company producing a variety of speciality food products developed out of the 500 acre family farm in Co Fermanagh, which had mainly reared beef for export to Europe and beyond. In 2004 Maurice Kettyle realised that there was a niche market for the very best of Irish food products such as dry-aged beef, Lough Erne Lamb, naturally reared Irish rose veal and really good chickens.
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