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  • What Foods Are In Season For June

    June is the month when it all starts to happen, produce-wise! We’ve already seen the first strawberries hitting the shelves. So what other food beauty...
  • Grass-fed cows from five Cork farms are the secret to the success of a single batch cream liqueur, writes John Wilson.   Irish cream liqueur is not a new concept. Various people claim to have invented Bailey’s Irish Cream back in 1974, but whoever was responsible created one of the most popular drinks in the world. Since then, there have been many imitations, but surprisingly little innovation, other than adding alternative spirits. Five Farms is a luxury cream liqueur that is breaking the mould, with milk produced from five farms in South West Cork. Five Farms is the brainchild of Johnny Harte, a veteran of the Irish drinks scene. “I first had the idea on a trip I made to the US some years ago,” he tells me. “I had a conversation with Mick Harris, president, McCormack Distilling Co. in Weston, Missouri, (‘a proud Irish-American Company’), about how the Irish Cream liqueur category had never really developed.” Johnny went away and thought about it and five years ago, the duo formed a partnership. “It always has and always will only ever come from grass-fed cows on five farms in a special part of South West Cork. There is a unique microclimate there, where the Atlantic Gulf Stream comes in along a corridor of land that is warmer, where the grass grows sooner and for longer. What people want is a genuine product of provenance, one that you could believe – so every claim has to be honest and true.“ Everything bar the vanilla (they use genuine Madagascar vanilla extract) comes from the county of Cork; the cream, the milk, the neutral spirit and the whiskey. It is made in the Silver Pale ice cream facility in Fermoy. “It went to market in 2017. We sent two containers to the US, and I went out in January thinking I would have to do a lot of difficult selling but discovered that it had sold out over Christmas. One shop told me they had to raffle off the last few bottles so great was the demand. We knew then we were onto something; we are now in our third year, and so far, the focus has been on the US and Ireland. Both have been extremely successful. I am so delighted with the reaction in Ireland. I never ever thought it would be as popular, I am blown away. You hope people will embrace it – I have never seen a reaction like it and we are only beginning.” The name Five Farms came about partly by chance. The name they originally chose looked like it might run into patent problems down the line. “The name sort of made itself. I kept referring to it as five farms on the phone when I was talking to people,” Johnny explains, “Once we knew there were five farms that could guarantee consistent supply, we decided to go with that.” The farms gave further inspiration, with the eye catching flip top bottle designed to resemble a traditional milk churn. “The whole idea is of a ritual; when you sit down, part of it is the top popping like the cork on a bottle of wine.” A sweet drink, that’s won several awards, Five Farms is warming, rich, creamy and smooth, coating the palate with caramel and vanilla. Drink it cold, at room temperature, or fix yourself a cocktail to toast this great new Irish success story. The Five Farms Espresso Martini, with vodka and coffee, sounds like an excellent place to start. Five Farms is available for around €35 from specialist off-licences and SuperValu.       Visit Our Shop
  • Wild Atlantic Way Donegal

    As part of our series on the places to see and visit on the Wild Atlantic Way, we travel the section of road between Donegal Town and the village of Muff,...
  • Hay Food, Don’t Think It’s Mad…

    Firstly, apologies for the title of this blog. Think the opening line of The Beatles song Hey Jude,  and you just might get it.  It seemed appropriate...
  • Wild Atlantic Way Guide To West Cork

    The Wild Atlantic Way is Ireland’s first designated road drive. From Donegal to Cork – or the other way round – whichever way you want to drive it!...
  • Plan A Unique Irish Country House Wedding At Ballymaloe House Hotel

      Ballymaloe House Hotel is an elegant East Cork family home. The traditional country charm, locally sourced top-quality food and intimate environment...
  • Pack Up Your Picnic

    If you ask us, no summer picnic feels complete without these seasonal bucket list items. We share with you tips for packing the ultimate summer picnic...
  • The History Of Afternoon Tea in Ireland

      There’s something very gracious about taking afternoon tea. The tiered cake stand is loaded with elegant crustless triangular or finger sandwiches,...
  • Top 10 Foods To Forage In Ireland This May

    Here are his top recommendations for May:   BORDULACK Bordulack is a beach herb that has the taste of fresh salty oysters and cucumber. It does need...
  • Last Minute Easter Sunday Lunch With Good Food Ireland®

    Who’s been tasked with cooking the lunch this Easter Sunday, then? If you got landed with being up to your elbows in veg peelings while everyone else...
  • Fun Fact About St. Patrick’s Day Pigs, Parades And Pots

    It’s Paddy’s Day and we hope you’ve got the shamrock at the ready! Here’s a little round-up of some of the fun and feasting of this great day: ...
  • Food For Thought
    What Foods do we use to Celebrate St Patrick’s Day in Ireland? All across Ireland, people broke the fast and enjoyed meals of pork and bacon with potatoes and garden vegetables, and toasted St Pat with a celebratory beverage called the Pota Phádraig or St Patrick’s Pot. The custom — called drowning the shamrock — involves floating a shamrock leaf in a whiskey shot before drinking.   So, if you are looking to feast like the Irish on March 17, here’s the Good Food Ireland® guide to the traditional foods and drinks we use to celebrate St Patrick’s Day in Ireland.   Mains   Bacon and Cabbage Bacon and Cabbage Corned beef and cabbage is probably the dish that most non-Irish people associate with St Patrick’s Day in Ireland. However, that particular dish traces its roots back to the early days of Irish immigrants in America, not actually Ireland itself.   Traditionally, Irish bacon was the meat most often eaten in Ireland, mainly because it was cheap. Small rural households would keep two pigs — one for the table and the other for the market. However, Irish immigrants found the price of pork in America to be very expensive, so they started using beef in their recipes instead and brined it much the same way as they would pork. This is how the traditional Irish dish of bacon and cabbage became corned beef and cabbage.   So, if you want to keep things strictly traditional and eat what the Irish eat on St Patrick’s Day, cook up some bacon and cabbage and serve it with some rich, flavoursome parsley sauce. In Ireland, the dish calls for a loin of bacon and in-season Savoy cabbage.   Here’s a traditional recipe for Bacon and Cabbage with Parsley Sauce from Ed Cooney, Executive Chef at the five-star Merrion Hotel in Dublin, Ireland.     Irish Stew Irish Stew Stew is probably the best-known dish that people associate with Ireland. In fact, a stew is so ubiquitous in Ireland that it even made its way onto a postage stamp.   Stews are a method of cooking a meal in one pot. Every household in Ireland has its own way of making stew, but, traditionally, Irish stew was made with a combination of mutton, onions, potatoes, water and some light seasoning of salt and pepper.   A controversial ingredient in a stew is carrots and you’ll often hear Irish cooks ask ‘do you put carrots in your stew’? People feel strongly about this addition. However, nowadays, you’ll find all sorts of flavour enhancers in Irish stew recipes including celery, leeks, bay leaf, chicken stock and even oxtail soup!   In Ireland, you’ll find many restaurants and pubs serving a modern take on a traditional stew made with beef and Guinness. But whether you opt for traditional Irish lamb stew or beef and Guinness stew, just make sure you make it the night before serving, as all Irish people know that stew always tastes better the next day.   Looking for some traditional Irish stew recipes? Here’s a Signature Beef and Guinness Stew. Here is a flavourful Traditional Irish Stew recipe from Calvey’s Achill Mountain Lamb and here is a great recipe for Traditional Irish Stew.     Irish Seafood Chowder Seafood Chowder   Seafood chowder is a veritable feast of fresh, salted and smoked fish and evidence of the bounty of Ireland’s fresh waterways and seas. Irish seafood chowder is a very adaptable dish and ingredients vary from place to place and day to day based on the fisherman’s catch from the local waters.   A good chowder starts with cream and wine and then a mixture of fish and shellfish as well as vegetables like celery and potatoes. To enhance the taste of the ocean, carrageen moss is often added. This is a seaweed that is gathered off the coasts of Ireland.   In seafood chowder, the proportion of solid ingredients to liquid is larger, making this a very hearty dish indeed. The most traditional accompaniment to seafood chowder is homemade brown bread or soda bread smeared with a thick coating of real Irish butter. Traditional Irish seafood chowder really does warm the cockles of your heart.   Check out these cracking chowder recipes from Good Food Ireland® or its members: West Coast Seafood Chowder Recipe Seafood Chowder Recipe Kelly’s Resort Irish Seafood Chowder Recipe     Shepherd’s Pie Shepherds Pie Shepherd’s Pie is the ultimate Irish comfort food and a staple on dinner tables across the island. However, Shepherd’s Pie is not the same as Cottage Pie. There is a difference. The difference is the meat with which each dish is made. Cottage Pie is made with minced beef and Shepherd’s Pie is made with minced lamb. Well, the clue is in the name — you don’t see many shepherds herding cows, do you?   This isn’t a pie in the traditional sense — it is not made with pasty, and there is no crust. Instead, the topping is mashed potatoes (although we just say: ’mash’ here in Ireland).   Shepherd’s Pie is a great dish for St Patrick’s Day because spring lamb is coming into season. The minced lamb is cooked in a gravy with onions, and sometimes, according to preference, carrots, celery, and even peas are added. Then, this hearty mixture is topped with fluffy, buttery mashed potatoes. You can elevate the dish even further by adding Irish cheese to the potato topping.   For a Shepherd’s Pie recipe with a tasty twist, try this version.     The Ballymaloe Cookbook, Myrtle Allen The Ballymaloe Cookbook by Myrtle Allen – The book that began a food revolution. Revised and updated 50- year-anniversary Edition. “It isn’t a collection of recipes but a reflection of a genuine and authentic way of life, related to the land, the culture and the produce of the country in which Myrtle Allen lives” – Financial Times Myrtle Allen is the founder and owner of the award-winning restaurant at Ballymaloe. This is a collection of the recipes used in the restaurant. Most are original, some are adaptations of ordinary or traditional dishes and others are classic recipes that are frequently asked for.   Just €29.99 in our Online Shop. Shipping Worldwide. Buy Now    
  • Drowning The Shamrock

    The tradition of ‘Drowning the Shamrock’ on Saint Patrick’s Day has a story. This longstanding ceremony dates back to times when Lenten fasting was...