My Irish Eyes Are Smiling

Tuesday 31/5/2005

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Diary and Notes

It would be traditional, what with me being English, to be breaking out into 'saints and begorragh' type stereotypes for my blog today. For some reason the Irish always seem to get a rough ride where the English are concerned and there's enough history books written about this unfortunate state of affairs to fill the libraries of Alexandria. I'm not going into any of the reasons myself, I'm more concerned with food.

So, if you haven't guessed it's Irish night tonight. The first real Irish meal I've had on my blog so far. What's it to be? Irish stew, oysters in Guiness? No, today I am continuing my black pudding odyssey and trying one of the tasty little beasties from across the emerald sea. I've had English black pudding and Swedish black pudding, today it's Irish and mighty fine it was too - and what traditional Irish meal would be complete without something made from potatoes?

There are some stereotypes which have more than a grain of truth and the Irish love of potatoes is one of them. The Irish are perhaps the world's experts on how to cook these underrated vegetables and have recipe after recipe of clever ideas.

I will say that today's meal was a real treat, simple but delicious. This is the sort of thing that's started to find its way onto the menus of posh restaurants in London. Top chefs have begun to rediscover these old simple dishes and are happily reinventing them with a touch of truffle oil and fois gras - just to ruin the flavour of course.

No fois gras today, nothing but how it should be. The black pudding was good, different from either the English or the Swedish. Irish black pudding has lots of barley and grains inside and wasn't as peppery as the English, something I accommodated for by adding loads to the coclannon.

And if you're having this for dinner you really need some good brown sauce and a pint or two of cold Guinness. Slange!

Cake Blog

Chocolate Chip Brioche: At the University Staff Canteen. A wonderful nibble with a cup of famous Java.


  • Colcannon
  • Irish Black Pudding
  • Bacon
  • Fried Egg
  • HP Sauce
  • Guinness


    2 Large Potatoes
    1/2 Spring Green Cabbage
    1/2 Onion
    Tbsp Vegetable Oil
    50g Butter
    50ml Milk
    Pinch Mace
    Salt and Black Pepper


  • Peel and chop the potatoes into chunks. Boil until soft. Slice the onion and brown in a little oil. When the potatoes are sofdt mash until there are no lumps left (I passed my through a sieve). Mix the butter and milk with the mash, season (use LOTS of fresh black pepper if you want to be authentic) and add a pinch or two of freshly ground mace. Add the chopped greens to the onions and sweat a little then stir in the tasty mashed potato. Easy and delicious.


    *All quantities are very approximate and for a single person