High steaks in the lottery of cooking a sirlon to perfection

I have always been quite indifferent to the taste of red meat and while the mere mention of a roast beef dinner with all the trimmings brings most to the point of dribbling, the image does not leave me foaming at the mouth.

My issue with red meat stems from a childhood in the Irish countryside where meat was served overcooked and dry; there seemed to be an underlying fear a slight hint of pinkness might see the cow rise from the plate and dander back out to the field. Continue reading

School Dinners: An Education

Complaints about the quality of school dinners are often in the headlines and from Health Ministers to celebrity chefs and parents everyone has an opinion, including me; the thought of fishcakes with watery mash still makes me shudder.

Fishcakes aside not all of my memories are bad. I first sampled chicken curry in the school canteen, the authenticity of the greenish brown sauce was questionable but the mild spicing still tickled my young taste buds.

My favourite school meal though  is not one of my fancier dinner suggestions, it is more a retro combo meal that is simple in style and rich in flavour and is … Continue reading

Yellow Door Deli

For the second year running Yellow Door Deli has won the Deli and Farm Shop Signature Dish at the Great Taste Awards 2014 for their Strangford Prawn, Leek and Comber Potato Soup.

Yellow Door is a family run business which began as a restaurant and has grown to incorporate an artisan bakery, three delis and an outside catering division.

Chef Simon Dougan, from KIllylea in County Armagh, runs the Portadown deli and I asked him what makes the Yellow Door’s award winning food special.

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Taste and Dine – The curtain raiser to Belfast Restaurant Week

Pop up restaurants are pitching up at the City Hall this weekend to celebrate the start of Belfast Restaurant Week.

At the Taste and Dine event food lovers will have a rare chance to sample food and eat at pop up versions of some of Belfast’s best loved restaurants including Ten Square,  James St South and Mourne Seafood. Continue reading

The Great Taste of Hannan’s Meats

The Great Taste Awards are the Oscars of the food world and local winner Peter Hannan believes receiving an award elevates “good food to great food”.

Hannan Meats was awarded the prestigious Golden Fork in the Best Speciality Food from Northern Ireland category for their Moyallon 3 sweet bacon ribs, and seven other products also received three-star gold status at a gala event held in London last month.

Peter Hannan started the food supply company 25-years-ago and supplies meat products to top restaurants across Northern Ireland and to the public from factory outlet shop – the Meat Merchant – in Moira. Continue reading