Friday 15 December 2017

Homespun magic

Avoca fish pie with creamie mash
Avoca fish pie with creamie mash

Simon Pratt

'A Year At Avoca' cookery book started life as a way to share often-requested recipes and secrets from the Avoca kitchens. The new addition is a seasonal journey which encourages the use of as many local ingredients as possible, minimising the number of food miles travelled.

Creating good food requires good ingredients prepared with respect and with care. Great meals that linger longer in the memory require a little alchemy and lots of inspiration, and I hope these recipes from our new book provide both.

When we started to produce food at Avoca -- quite by accident more than 20 years ago -- I bemoaned the fact that there were so few artisan producers, but today we are spoiled and it's lovely to go out and source local ingredients.

The Irish fishermen go out in all weather, so you won't be stuck for fresh fish for our pie. It really is comfort food at its best -- and it looks good enough for a dinner party, topped off with a toasty hat of delicious creamy mash.

To continue the comfort-food theme, the bread and butter pudding is wonderful straight out of the oven. We like to use free-range eggs, and the addition of some dark rum and sultanas makes it extra special. Enjoy!

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