Sunday 17 December 2017

Naughty or Nice?

Enjoying food is all about balance, so let our foodies Aoife McElwain and Aoife Barry give you a naughty and a nice option each week. Choice never tasted so good!

SOUPS FOR THE NAUGHTY AND NICE: NAUGHTY: Luxuriously creamy potato, leek and smoked salmon soup

Heat 2 tbsps olive oil in a large, deep pot over a medium heat. Fry one large and roughly chopped onion for five minutes until softened. Add 400g well-washed and roughly chopped leeks and three medium potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped.

Cook, covered, over a low heat for five minutes, making sure the vegetables don't stick to the bottom. Add 1.4 litres of vegetable stock, bring to the boil and cook covered for 20 minutes until the vegetables are tender.

Blend until smooth. Gently mix in 140ml single cream and 100g smoked salmon strips. Divide the soup between four bowls. Top each bowl of soup with a strip or two of smoked salmon and a sprinkling of freshly chopped chives.


Vegan red lentil soup

Take 180g red lentils; 1 tsp salt; 1 tin diced tomatoes; 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced; 1 tbsp olive oil; 2 garlic cloves, minced; 1 can light coconut milk; 1 tbsp ground coriander; 1 tsp ground cumin; 1 tsp turmeric powder, and a handful of fresh coriander leaves.

Put the lentils, salt and five cups water into a large saucepan and cover. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes, partially covered. Put the tomatoes and ginger in a food processor and blend until smooth. Set aside, then heat the oil in a large pot over a medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring often, until just golden.

Pour in the tomato mixture, coconut milk and spices. Simmer for 15 minutes. Add the lentils and simmer for 20 minutes. Season then sprinkle with fresh, chopped coriander.


The RDS is brimming with local craft beers this weekend, but the Irish Craft Beer Festival will be wrapping up in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4, tomorrow, so don’t miss the chance to see what one of Ireland’s burgeoning industries has to offer.

A €10 day pass will give you access to some of the country’s most enticing independent breweries. Among them are Trouble Brewing, the Dungarvan Brewing Company, Eight Degrees Brewing and O’Haras. See www.irishcraftbeer for all further information.


For cake lovers


Caryna Camerino is a one-woman company specialising in tremendously designed and lip-smacking cakes. You'll catch her at farmers' markets or online at Follow her to find out how you can get your hands on her outrageously decadent-sounding chocolate strawberry cheesecake brownies.

For vegans


JL, the woman behind the website, is wonderfully enthusiastic. With a passion for a compassionate lifestyle, a love of food and a message of self-acceptance, she makes veganism fun and approachable. Follow her for recipes such as coconut milk and chickpea flour bread with peachy butter.

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