Irish Times

Image of view from kitchen sink

This has been my kitchen sink for the past 10 days. The view actually belongs to an old friend, Andy, a man with a sense of humour I have always treasured. When I once got the push from a job, he gave me a clock as a leaving present. Inscribed on the back was ‘tempus fuckit’.  Continue reading

Chicken with Summer Vegetables

This is the lightest, most summery dish and very adaptable to what you have on hand. Please don’t skip the cider, mustard and tarragon though … they are what brings the other ingredients to life and makes your guests reach for hunks of bread to dunk in the delectable sauce.

What vegetables you use depend on what you have handy … as it’s a one-pot dish and the garden is bursting with all sorts of good things, I used broad beans, peas, carrots, baby new potatoes and (the second time around, not shown in the picture below) French beans.  Continue reading

Spicy Buttermilk Chicken

I’d love to tell you a witty, entertaining story about the inception of this dish but there isn’t one. My life recently has been all about deadlines and decorating and I’m in grave danger of turning into a BOF (Boring Old Fart). If you’d like to know about kippers, racism in food or what to do when the paint won’t stick to the wall, I’m your girl. But if you are similarly pushed for time in the kitchen, you might like this recipe.  Continue reading

Teriyaki Duck with Stir-fried Cucumber

Image of teriyaki duck, carved

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like teriyaki although I’m sure now I’ve said that someone will put their hand up. I love it in pretty much all its forms, authentically Japanese and Westernised, although I have yet to eat a teriyaki burger.  Continue reading

Truffles: The Cheapskate’s Fix

Image of black truffle

Black Périgord truffle, image courtesy moi-même

Truffles are divisive … you either love them or hate them, so if you’re looking ahead for a Valentine’s Day recipe for your beloved, it’s as well to check with them first. My husband once watched, with bemusement and possibly just a tinge of horror, as I troughed through an entire truffle-based menu at a French restaurant, from starter through to dessert. Continue reading

Basics: Chicken Stock

When I first launched this ‘basics’ series I asked for suggestions from readers. Quite a few people asked how to make stock. I must admit I’ve been postponing a response as it’s a thorny subject.

If you’d like to know how to make a restaurant-standard demi-glace, or a bone broth that’s simmered for 24 hours, you’ve come to the wrong place. I don’t have the patience for the first or the inclination for the second. Continue reading