Tuesday, 31 January 2012


What a lovely day in Dublin today - not!. So I decided why not make the most of a bad day and have a good start... with a good breakfast. I went with the rich option of Eggs Benedict. I made mine without the bacon, but with some homemade basil bread and some poached eggs and Hollandaise it makes the perfect breakfast, just finished off with some sea salt and cracked black pepper. - Yum!

Bread Recipe:

560g Strong Flour
10g Sea Salt
5g Dried Yeast
300ml Luke-Warm Water
20ml Oil
20g Pesto

  1. Add the dry ingredients to the bowl and using the dough hook mix in the combined yeast and water, the pesto. Mix until the dough forms a smooth appearance.
  2. Leave to prove in a warm area for 40 minutes or until doubled in size, then form the dough into the desired shape and leave to prove again for 40 minutes or until doubled in size. then cook for 40 minutes in a preheated oven at gas mark 6/ 220 degrees. 
*To check the bread is thoroughly cooked, wen you take it from the oven, knock on the base of the bread and if it sounds hollow it is ready, leave to cool slightly before cutting.


This is the french classic accompaniment to most fish dishes, it can be tricky to make but to make it once is all it takes. It goes well with some egg dishes too.

Hollandaise Sauce

114g Unsalted Butter
2 Crushed White Peppercorns
20ml Vinegar
2 Egg Yolks


  1. Place the butter in a heatproof bowl and gently melt in the microwave.
  2. Add the eggs, vinegar and pepper to a mixing bowl and using a electric hand blander whiz the egg yolk mixture and slowly add the butter until all combined. 
  3. Check the seasoning. Leave at room temperature until needed.


After watching Heston's new show "How to cook like Heston" he made poached eggs on the first episode and I thought yeah I'm gonna have to do something with this using his full proof never fail method. You need a large pot of water a thermometer some eggs. 


Add the eggs to the almost boiled water approx. 80 degrees and cook for 2 minutes. Then remove and set aside.


Toast some of the bread you have made, (you could be toasting while poaching the eggs). Place the eggs on top then you put some of the hollandaise on top then garnish with some sea salt and cracked pepper, some fresh herbs couldn't hurt too.

Monday, 30 January 2012

What's For Dinner? - Dublin Coddle

Coddle, as its name probably gives it away originated in Dublin, its a really (really) old Irish dish mainly peasant food. Not usually seen outside of Dublin. there is no one recipe for it as many families would have customed it. You wont find it in any cookbook and some people have never heard of it. By looking at the ingredients your going to think - that's disgusting i don't blame you it doesn't sound too appealing but when made right its unbelievable! This recipe would serve 4. It uses up most of the ingredients you would have from your Sunday fry up.

450g Streaky Rashers        
450g Sausages
3 Large Onions, Peeled, And Chopped           
200g Floury Potatoes, Peeled
6 Tbsp Fresh Parsley, Chopped       
Freshly Ground Black Pepper To Taste
500ml Water/Milk              


  1. Cut the potatoes into fairly large pieces (leave them whole if small).
  2. Chop the fresh parsley.
  3. Choose a heavy pot with a really tight-fitting lid.
  4. Put a generous layer of chopped onions on the bottom and then layer the other ingredients, giving each layer a generous twist of pepper.
  5. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a bare simmer.
  6. Cover very tightly. Cook for 2–5 hours!
  7. The longer and slower the cooking, the better this dish will be.
  8. It cannot come to any harm providing the lid is really tight.
  9. A very low oven is best, set at 120 degrees/ gas mark 1.

Saturday, 28 January 2012


Mayonnaise (1 large jar/ 500g approx)

3 Egg Yolks
½ Teaspoon Of Salt
1 Teaspoon Of Dijon Mustard
1 Teaspoon of Wholegrain Mustard
3 Capfuls of White Wine Vinegar
600ml Oil (200ml Sunflower, 400ml Olive Oil)


  1. Combine egg yolks, salt and mustard.
  2. Add lemon juice or vinegar and mix well.
  3. Slowly start adding the oil
  4. When the sauce thickens, the oil may be added more quickly.
  5. A word of warning, if, before the sauce begins to thicken, the oil is added more then a drop at a time, the mayonnaise may curdle.
  6. The mix may be too thick so add a little water at the end to loosen the mix a bit and to whiten it 

Friday, 27 January 2012


Who doesn't like a slice of Madeira cake with a nice cup of tea on a Sunday night, or in this case a Friday, Makes approx 2 1lb loafs.

Madeira Sponge

454g Margarine or Butter
454g Caster Sugar
8 Eggs
510g Self Raising Flour
56g Lemon Peel


  1. Cream butter and sugar together until a light a fluffy consistency is achieved.
  2. Add eggs beating in gradually until fully absorbed.
  3. Fold in the sifted flour (you can add the zest to the flour) and mix until a smooth creamy texture is formed, take care not to over mix.
  4. Place equal quantities in two greased and floured loaf tins smooth the tops. 
  5. Bake at 177ÂșC / gas mark 3/4 for approximately 15 – 20 minutes.
  6. When cooked, de-mould onto wire racks, place in fridge to chill.
  7. Slice with a clean knife, dust with fine icing sugar

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Lemon Tart

This recipe can be done with individual mould or one large ring either way it makes this amazing lemon tart, it can be sharp so if you don't particularly like sharp flavours i would add a little extra sugar and the juice of 4 just to make it a bit sweeter in flavour. 

Lemon Tart 

1 lb of Sweet Pastry
9 Eggs
400g Sugar
5 Lemon (Zest of 2 and Juice of 5)
250ml Double Cream


  1. Grate lemon zest, squeeze out juice, strain and reserve along with the zests. 
  2. Break the eggs into a large bowl, add the sugar, whisk until smooth and blended, add the lemon.
  3. Whisk the cream very lightly, add to the egg mixture, mixing lightly, leave to chill for 1 hour. Line an 8in. flan case with the pastry, proceed to bake blind for 15 minutes. 
  4. Remove from the oven carefully remove the beans and paper, brush the inside of the flan case with egg yolks and sugar. 
  5. Return to oven and cook for a further 5 minutes fill the flan case with the lemon filling, return to the oven and cook for 30 min at 120°C / gas mark 1 allow the tart to chill, prior to serving dust with icing sugar.

Friday, 20 January 2012

The Basics - Sweet Pastry

It's always good to know the basics, yes you can buy it frozen but they aren't always the best quality but the puff pastry I would by frozen the shortcrust, savoury and sweet pastry I would make myself. To make puff pastry from scratch is quite time consuming and doesn't always produce even results i have a secret to tell you - most restaurants would actually buy the puff pastry as its unpredictable if "home-made" and restaurants need to know its going to work they cant just hope it will.

Sweet Pastry, this recipe makes 1kg of pastry. It can be frozen to prolong its self life.

454g Plain Flour
196g Butter (Unsalted)
112g Castor Sugar
2 Eggs


There are 2 ways of doing this the quick way also called the all in one method or the creaming method. You decide! I tend to go for option 1.

Option 1: All-In-One:

  1. Place the flour, butter and sugar in a bowl and mix.
  2. Add the eggs.
  3. Mix until smooth at medium speed.
  4. Wrap in cling film, store in the fridge.

Option 2: Creaming:

  1. Place the butter and sugar in a bowl.
  2. Cream until pale yellow in colour.
  3. Add the lightly beaten eggs.
  4. Fold in the Flour.

Mix until smooth at medium speed.
Wrap in cling film, store in the fridge.

*with both of these recipes you need to chill them for at least 30 minutes before using them!