A taste of home: Recipes from top Irish chefs including Neven Maguire and Kevin Dundon
This year's Taste of Dublin is celebrating the homecoming of talented Irish cooks from around the world. Here, we asked some of the festival's top chefs for the recipes that remind them of home…
Kevin Dundon's summer berry pavlova
You can use any variation of fresh berries - from raspberries and blueberries to blackberries - to create this classic taste of Irish summer (whatever the weather!).
180g or 6 egg whites
360g caster sugar
½ tsp of vanilla essence
½ tsp of cornflour
½ tsp of white wine vinegar
240ml cream, very softly whipped
Preheat the oven to 110˚C/225˚F and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
Place the egg whites into a spotlessly clean mixing bowl and beat on a light speed until they are beginning to become stiff. Then, while still beating slowly, pour the caster sugar on to the frothy egg whites, a little at a time.
When all the sugar has been incorporated, add the vanilla essence, cornflour, and vinegar, and give one final whisk on high speed until the mix is glossy and stable.
Spread all of the mixture out on the baking sheet and bake for one-and-a-half hours until the meringue mixture is very firm to touch but still soft in the middle. I normally leave mine to cool in the oven with the door ajar.
When cooled, and just before serving, transfer to a serving plate and spoon over the softly whipped cream. Add the fruit on top of the cream and serve immediately.
Kevin Dundon is the chef/proprietor of Dunbrody Country House hotel & restaurant, in Wexford, kevindundon.com
Danni Barry's Salt aged beef rump & braised shortrib
Having grown up on a beef farm in Northern Ireland myself, I've seen first hand the fantastic quality of our beef and I'm so proud of the produce that comes from this little country of ours. For this beef mains, I've used two of my favourite cuts of beef, not very high end but they have loads of flavour. Braising is a good method for cooking tougher cuts and also makes for a great sauce so it's worth the wait.
Sea salt and pepper
1 x 450g-500g Jacobs ladder/ short-rib
300ml red wine
1 pint of chicken stock
1 sprig thyme
1 sprig tarragon
3 cloves garlic
4 black peppercorns
3 x broccoli heads
2 x small white onion
220g tenderstem broccoli
4 x 200g-225g rump steaks
Rub the short-rib with oil and season with salt and pepper. Colour all sides in a hot pan and place in a roasting tray. Cover with the red wine, chicken stock, herbs, garlic and peppercorns. Wrap with foil and cook at 140˚C/275˚F/gas 1 for 2 hours until the meat comes away from the bones easily. Remove from the dish and pass the cooking liquor through a sieve into a pan and reduce by half to make the sauce.
Trim the tops of the broccoli heads. Boil in salted water for 2 minutes and while still hot, blend together with the butter until smooth. Bake the onions in their skin on a tray at 160˚C/350˚F/gas 4 for 8 mins. Cool slightly and cut in half lengthways. Then place exposed side down in a hot pan to colour. Remove the skin.
Toss the tenderstem broccoli in oil and grill for 1 min each side. For the rump, it's best to remove from fridge about 30mins before cooking. Lightly brush the steaks with oil and season with salt and pepper. In a hot pan, cook the rumps - ideally no more than two at a time - for 4 mins either side and rest for another 4 minutes. This will be medium, if you prefer more or less well done, add or drop 2 mins from either side.
To serve, spoon warm purée on to a plate, add a slice of the short-rib, glazed with sauce. Add the beef rump and garnish with the grilled vegetables.
Danni Barry is head chef at Deanes EIPIC in Belfast, for which she was awarded a Michelin Star, deaneseipic.com
Anna Haugh's coddle
This is a slightly more refined version of one of my favourite dishes that my mother cooked for us growing up. She is an amazing cook, and without doubt my inspiration for becoming a chef. This is actually a lovely starter dish for a dinner party.
2 onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 sticks of celery, chopped
100g unsmoked streaky rashers, chopped
260g cubed potatoes, roughly the size of a cherry tomato
400ml chicken or ham stock
500ml full-fat milk
Salt and black pepper
160g lardons or cubes or ham
50g cooked kale
50g cooked carrots
Sweat the onions, garlic and celery in butter and a good pinch of salt on a medium heat. When the onion and celery have become translucent, add the rashers, chopped potatoes and the stock. Cook for 15-20 minutes until the potato is cooked through. Add the cream and milk. Transfer half of the soup mixture into a separate bowl and blitz with a hand blender until a silky purée forms.
Add the puréed soup back into the pot with the rest of the vegetables. Put your sausages and lardons in the pot and simmer for 10 minutes until the sausage meat is cooked through. Check the seasoning and adjust to taste. Finish with carrots and kale.
Anna Haugh is executive chef at Bob Bob Ricard restaurant in London, bobbobricard.com
Neven Maguire's Garlic and Lemon Chicken
This is the kind of dinner I make again and again at home. The combination of flavours is just sublime and it really takes no time at all to prepare.
3 tbsp lemon rapeseed oil
4 shallots, peeled and halved
2 large garlic bulbs, halved
4 boneless chicken breasts, skin on
1 lemon, cut in half lengthways and sliced
4 fresh thyme sprigs
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Lightly dressed rocket and green bean salad, to serve
Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F/gas mark 4). Heat 1 tablespoon of the lemon rapeseed oil in a non-stick frying pan over a low heat. Add the shallots and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes, until they begin to catch some colour. Transfer to a small roasting tin.
Increase the heat under the frying pan to high, add another tablespoon of the oil and quickly seal the chicken breasts for 2 minutes on each side, until browned. Transfer the chicken breasts to the small roasting tin, tucking them around the shallots and garlic, then tuck in the lemon slices and thyme sprigs. Season with salt and pepper, then drizzle over the remaining tablespoon of the lemon rapeseed oil.
Place in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until the chicken breasts are cooked through. Remove the chicken from the oven and cover loosely with foil for 5 minutes to allow the chicken to rest, then serve straight to the table with the rocket and green bean salad.
Neven Maguire is the chef/proprietor of MacNean House, in Co Cavan, nevenmaguire.com
Sunil Ghai's fish and chips
This is a Pickle take on the classic fish and chips.
For the fish:
4 x 100g John Dory fillets
Coarse semolina, for coating
Small cube of butter, for basting
For the marinade:
1 tbsp tamarind pulp
1 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder
½ tsp carom seeds
2 tsp fenugreek leaves (dry)
Salt, to taste
Zest of one lime
For the chips:
2 medium potatoes
Pinch of turmeric
½ tsp of chilli powder
1 tbsp rice flour
For crab chutney:
½ tsp mustard seeds
½ shallot, finely chopped
½in cube ginger, chopped
150g pasteurised crab meat
2 tbsp mayonnaise
For the cauliflower and carrot pickle:
50ml mustard oil
1 tsp Nigella seeds
2 tsp fennel powder
½ tsp red chilli powder
100ml malt vinegar
80g cauliflower florets
80g carrots, peeled and thick cut
Fresh coriander, chopped
Marinate the fish with listed ingredients for 15-20 minutes to allow the flavours infuse. Cut the potatoes like a matchstick and wash them for good 20 minutes under cold running water to get rid of all the starch. Pat dry the potatoes, and sprinkle on a little turmeric and chilli powder. And some rice flour and fry them in vegetable oil in a deep-fat fryer at 130˚C until crispy.
To make the crab chutney, heat the oil, add mustard seeds and let it crackle for a few seconds, making sure the oil doesn't go black. Add the shallot and ginger and sauté on a slow heat for 8 to 10 mins. Add the pasteurised crab meat and give a good stir before seasoning with salt. Once the mixture is cool, mix in the mayonnaise.
To make the pickle, heat the oil in a pot and add the Nigella seeds. Wait for few seconds before you add the spices and vinegar. Add the jaggery and the vegetables before cooking for 10 to 12 mins and keep aside. Check the seasoning, it should be sweet and more sour. Once it has cooled, add the chopped coriander.
Roll the fish in semolina. Fry the fish in a non-stick pan, starting on a high heat for 2 minutes before lowering the heat to a medium temperature. Cook the fish on both sides for 8 minutes and finish in the pan with a knob of butter.
Serve hot with some pickle, crab chutney and crispy chips.
Sunil Ghai is the chef/proprietor of Pickle in Dublin, picklerestaurant.com
Ross lewis' Caramelised Irish apple and molasses sponge
Everyone remembers a baked apple dessert from their childhood and this dessert reminds me of that. There is a lovely twist with the molasses which brings a deep rich flavour to the Irish apple. It's a heart-warming and slightly decadent version of the old-fashioned baked apple sponge.
For the molasses sponge:
150g whole eggs
170g muscovado sugar
75g ground almonds
10g baking powder
5g cinnamon powder
5g nutmeg powder
150ml olive oil
For the caramelised apples:
20g caster sugar
2 Irish apples
10g unsalted butter
Light demerara sugar to dust
For the treacle sauce:
100mls pouring cream
15g unsalted butter
Whisk the eggs and sugar together on a medium speed for 8-10 minutes until light brown and fluffy. Pour in the milk and whisk for a further minute. Pass all the dry ingredients through a fine sieve and fold into the mix. Then fold in the olive oil. Butter the baking dishes and dust/line with demerara sugar. Leave aside.
Heat a frying pan on the stove. Add enough sugar to cover the base of the pan, allow to caramelise undisturbed. Wash and peel the apples and dice to a 2mm dice and add to the pan. Add a pinch of salt and caramelise for 1 minute then add the butter. Cook for a further minute and take off the heat. Using a pastry brush, butter 8 x 150g heatproof glass moulds and then dust with demerara sugar. If you don't have glass bowls, ramekin dishes will work equally well. Spoon 40g of the caramelised apple and place into each one then cover with 45g of the sponge mixture. Cover with cling film and set aside for up to 4 hours.
Bring treacle and cream to the boil and simmer for 1 minute. Whisk in the butter and take off the heat. Chill until needed.
Place the sponge in the oven and cook for 9 minutes at 185˚C/360˚F/gas 4. Bring the treacle sauce to the boil. Take the sponge out, pierce with a knife and pour 2 dessert spoons of sauce over the top. Serve with the caramelised apple, crème fraîche or vanilla ice cream.
Michelin-starred chef Ross Lewis is the chef/proprietor of Chapter One in Dublin, chapteronerestaurant.com
Cathal Armstrong's Pan-Fried Plaice with Lemon Caper Brown Butter
Plaice is a flat fish, similar to flounder. It's a delicate, sweet, white-fleshed fish. For my money, it's a more elegant fish than the renowned Dover (black) sole. The recipe calls for Wondra flour, which is an important ingredient to chefs. If you use all-purpose flour to coat fish fillets, the water in the flour releases when it hits the hot oil, mixes with the gluten and creates a batter of sorts. Wondra is very fine, freeze-dried flour that will form a thin, crisp coat to the exterior of fillets coated with it rather than a batter. The fish is pan-fried using a basting method similar to pan-roasting. (Frying just uses more oil.)
For the brown butter:
7 tbsp unsalted butter, cold
1 shallot, minced
2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp chicken stock
2 tbsp capers, rinsed and coarsely chopped
3 tbsp chopped fresh chives
For the fish:
2 x plaice or flounders, eviscerated, with head, tail and skin removed
4 tbsp canola oil
Wondra flour, for dusting
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp chopped garlic
Boiled potatoes, for serving
Season the fish. Sprinkle salt over both sides of each fish. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 2 tbsp of the butter and cook until it stops bubbling and turns pale brown (the colour of hazelnuts), about 2 minutes. Stir in the shallot and sauté for 30 seconds. Stir in the lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, chicken stock and capers. Stirring constantly, add the remaining 5tbsp of butter, 1 tbsp at a time, incorporating each completely into the emulsion before adding the next. Once all the butter has been added, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the chives.
Move the pan to a warm part of the stove while you prepare the fish. In a large sauté pan or well-seasoned cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, heat the canola oil until it shimmers. Dredge the fish lightly in flour and place them side-by-side in the pan. Pan-fry the fish for 5 minutes, until nicely browned on the bottom. Using a fish spatula, turn the fillets over.
Use one hand to tilt the handle of the pan toward you so the oil pools. With the other hand, scoop up some oil in a dessert spoon and baste the fish with it; continue to cook for several minutes more while repeating the basting over and over. When the fish is done, add the butter, thyme, and garlic to the pan and cook for 30 seconds more, basting as before. Transfer the fish to a warm platter (discard the cooking oil).
Pour the brown butter into a small pitcher or sauceboat. Divide the fish among four dinner plates and serve immediately with the brown butter. And boiled potatoes, of course.
Cathal Armstrong is co-owner and head chef at Restaurant Eve in Washington in the US, restauranteve.com
Simon Lamont's griddle bread
When you're out of bread on a Sunday morning, and you don't want to head out to the bakery, this no-fuss quick-rise bread is the answer. Don't worry if you char it a little - it still tastes great!
Makes 4 servings
1 mug plain flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Splash (150ml) of liquid (water, buttermilk, yoghurt, milk)
Put all of the ingredients into a mixing bowl and bring them together in your hands. Roll the dough into a log. Twist to divide it into four balls. Put the dough balls on to a dry griddle or pan over a medium heat. Put a lid on the pan and cook for five minutes on each side.
Star of TV3's The Lazy Chef, Simon Lamont is currently heading up the team at Shuck pop-up oyster bar in London, @ShuckLDN