Bring a Taste of Kildare to your Kitchen - IntoKildare
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Bring a Taste of Kildare to your Kitchen


Hot Oysters with Champagne Sauce

Rachel Allen
Salted Caramel Layer Cake
Serves 4

16 rock oysters

Champagne Sauce

This sauce is also excellent with baked fish, i.e. turbot, black sole and brill.


Half bottle of Champagne or sparkling white wine (375ml /12fl.oz)

1oz (25g/1 tablespoon) chopped shallot

4 large egg yolks

8ozs (225g) of butter

1/2 pint (300ml) softly whipped cream – measure when whipped


First make the champagne sauce.

Boil the champagne with the shallot, reducing to 1 tablespoon.  Remove from the heat and beat in the yolks.  Return to a very low heat and add the butter bit by bit as for Hollandaise sauce. When all the butter has melted fold in the whipped cream.

Scrub the oysters well.  Just before serving put into a hot oven 250°C / 475°F / regulo 9 until they just start to open and release their juices. Using an oyster knife remove and discard the top shell, place a little champagne sauce on top of each oyster and put under a hot grill until golden.  Serve immediately and garnish with fennel and a lemon wedge.


Blue Cheese Salad

Rachel Allen

Serves 4 as a starter

You will need:

  • Mixed salad leaves (starter)/chicory leaves (canapé)
  • 200g (7oz) good ripe blue cheese, broken up with your hands into big rough pieces (about 2½cm/1in)
  • 50ml (2fl oz) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • Handful of pecans, chopped coarsely
  • Handful or dried cranberries, chopped coarsely
  • Flat or curly parsley, chopped coarsely
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Mix the pecans and cranberries together in a bowl and add the blue cheese pieces and parsley.

To make the dressing, mix the extra-virgin olive oil and the balsamic vinegar, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle some toss in with the pecans, cranberries, blue cheese and parsley.

Toss the salad leaves in a bowl and add half of the blue cheese mixture. Divide between four plates and top each of the plates with the remainder of the mixture.

For the canapé, place the chicory leaves on a large plate and top with the mixture.

Serve immediately.


Trout Parfait & Chorizo Ailoi

Alex Adams (Head Chef, Dew Drop Inn)


  • 300g cold smoked trout fillet
  • 4 tbsp natural yogurt
  • 1 tbsp chopped parsley
  • Pinch paprika
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 loaf sour dough


  • 2 egg yolks
  • 100g chorizo
  • 300mls rapeseed oil
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp flat leaf parsley


Slice the sour dough thinly, drizzle with oil and toast in the oven for 10-15 mins at 170c

In a pot render the fat from the chorizo in 300ml of rapeseed oil. Let cool.

In a small blender, blend the egg yolks, Dijon, and white wine vinegar. Slowly drizzle the oil into the blender. This will make a thick emulsion like mayonnaise. Once all the oil is in , add the paprika, parsley and check seasoning .

In a mixing bowl , tear the smoked salmon and mix through the yogurt lemon juice , paprika and chopped parsley.



Pan Roast Scallops

Philip Gleeson (Executive Chef, Killashee Hotel)

Pan Roast Scallops, Cauliflower Puree, Fennel, Orange & Rocket Salad, Caper, Parsley, Almond Beurre Noisette


  • 3-4 scallops fresh
  • ½ cauliflower head
  • 1 banana shallot thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove crushed
  • 40mml cream
  • Fennel
  • Rocket lettuce
  • Orange (zest and segments)
  • Chopped parsley
  • Roasted flaked almonds
  • Capers
  • Salted butter
  • Sliced Parma Ham



Cauliflower Puree:
Thinly slice the cauliflower. Heat a small amount of olive oil in a saucepan. Add the thinly sliced shallots and garlic and cooked until soft. Add the cauliflower. Cook for 4-5 minutes without colour. Add the cream and seasoning. When the cauliflower is soft to touch remove from heat and place in blender. Blend mix till smooth. Check seasoning.

Almond Beurre noisette:
Place 200 g of salted butter in a sauce pan. Allow to boil and when all the steam has evaporated take the butter to a nut stage. You can smell the aroma from the pan. Remove and add lemon juice to stop cooking. Transfer to a bowl. When slightly cooled add the parsley, toasted almonds, capers.

For the Parma ham used pre sliced Parma ham. Place between to sheets of greaseproof paper and cook until crispy @ 180oc.
Place a non-stick frying on the gas. Ad a splash of olive oil. When hot add the scallops on one side for 2 minuets and then 1 minute on the other side. Add a knob of butter when turned.

For the salad thinly slice the fennel. Add the rocket, fennel and orange segments into bowl and dress with vinaigrette.
To assemble the dish, place the smooth cauliflower puree on the plate. Place the salad in the middle and place the scallops around the outside. Place the Parma ham on salad and spoon the dressing around.



Festive Vegetables

Joanna Fennell (The Green Bar & Restaurant at Burtown House & Gardens)

For a vegetarian or vegan Christmas, we join Joanna who shares her favourite dishes using seasonal vegetables to inspire you this festive season.


Salted caramel layer cak

Rachel Allen

Salted Caramel Layer Cake

Serves 10-12

For the cake you will need:

250g butter, softened

100g caster sugar

100g soft light brown sugar

100g golden syrup

4 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

350g self-raising flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

100ml milk


For the salted caramel sauce you will need:

225g caster or granulated sugar

3 tablespoons water

125ml cream

25g butter, cut into cubes

Pinch of salt


For the salted caramel buttercream you will need:

250g butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

500g icing sugar

1-2 tablespoons milk


  1. Preheat the oven to 180’C/160’Fan/350’F/Gas mark 4.
  2. Line the base of three 18cm cake tins (with sides at least 2 and a half cm high) with a disc of parchment paper, then butter the sides and dust with a little flour, shaking out the excess.
  3. Place the butter in a bowl and beat till very soft by hand or using an electric mixer, then add the caster sugar, the light brown sugar and the golden syrup, and beat well again for a couple of minutes until pale and light.
  4. Now crack the eggs into a separate bowl with the vanilla extract and whisk well to break up the eggs. Pour the egg mixture gradually into the butter and sugar mix, beating all the time. Only add more egg once the previous lot has blended into the mixture and is looking smooth and creamy.
  5. Now sift in the self-raising flour and the baking powder and mix together while pouring in the milk.  Mix well to combine.
  6. Tip the mixture into the prepared cake tins and smooth over the top with a palette knife or the back of a tablespoon.
  7. Bake in the centre of the preheated oven for approximately 25 minutes, until risen and cooked in the centre. A skewer inserted into the middle of the cakes will come out clean and the cakes will feel lightly springy to the touch.
  8. Allow the cakes to sit in the tin for 5 minutes, then remove from the tins, peel off the parchment paper and cool on a rack.
  9. While the cakes are cooking or cooling, make the salted caramel sauce. Place the caster or granulated sugar, whichever you’re using, in a saucepan with the water and set over a low heat, stirring the sugar to dissolve it while it heats up. Once the sugar has dissolved turn the heat up to high and let the syrup cook to a rich caramel. If it colours unevenly, just swirl the pan rather than stirring the mixture. Once you have a rich deep golden caramel, turn the heat down to low and gradually pour in the cream while using a whisk to mix it. Once all the cream is whisked in add in the butter, still stirring with the whisk, bit by bit until it’s all incorporated. Once it’s a smooth silky sauce, take it off the heat and mix in the salt. Allow to cool.
  10. Next, make the salted caramel buttercream. Cream the butter until really light and soft with 150g of the cooled salted caramel sauce, reserving the rest for later. Add in the vanilla extract and then gradually the icing sugar. If it’s a bit stiff add one or two tablespoons of milk to loosen it out slightly.
  11. Once the cakes are completely cool, place one on an upturned plate (this makes for easier icing) and spread a little of the salted caramel buttercream evenly over the top, you’ll need approximately 1 heaped tablespoonful.
  12. Cover with another cake then another heaped tablespoonful of the icing, and then the third cake on top.
  13. Now cover the top and sides of the cake using a palette knife or a dough scraper around the edges to get it really lovely and smooth.
  14. Transfer the cake to your chosen plate or cake stand.
  15. Pop the iced cake into the fridge for a few minutes just to slightly chill the outside of the buttercream then pour the remaining cooled salted caramel sauce over the top of the cake at the centre and let it slowly spread out and drizzle down the sides.

Warm Chocolate Mousse & whiskey caramel sauce

Mickael Viljanen (Head Chef, The Greenhouse Restaurant)


  • 230ml cream
  • 385g 70% chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 20g butter, diced
  • 2g Maldon sea salt
  • 230g egg whites


Melt chocolate & butter
Bring cream to boil and pour over melted chocolate and butter
Add salt, emulsify together with hand blender
Add egg whites and re-emulsify
Place mixture into a siphon bottle
Charge with gas capsules and keep warm in low (50C) oven

Whiskey Caramel

  • 200ml cream
  • 40ml whiskey
  • 20g butter
  • 175g caster sugar

Caramelise sugar
Add butter and whiskey, followed by cream
Bring to the boil and simmer for 1 minute
Remove from heat and let come to room temperature for serving

To serve:
Maldon salt
Olive oil

Place a large tablespoon of caramel to bottom of your serving bowl and top with warm chocolate mousse,
Finish with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of sea salt.


Turkey Stir Fry with Cranberry Sauce and Sweet and Sour Brussel Sprouts

Zabi & Izach (Lemongrass Fusion)

Lemongrass Fusion


  • Turkey strips
  • Vegetable oil
  • Fresh garlic
  • Fresh ginger
  • Lemongrass Fusion Cranberry Sauce (made using chilli garlic, chilli ginger, brown sugar and organic cranberries)
  • Red pepper
  • Yellow pepper
  • Green Pepper
  • Carrots
  • Courgette
  • Onion
  • Fresh chilli
  • Scallions
  • Pork Belly
  • Shallots
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Red Wine Vinegar
  • Sesame oil


First, get some fresh turkey breast and sauté it at a high temperature. When you first add it to the pan, give it a few seconds in the hot oil to begin to cook properly before adding any other ingredients.

Next, add in your fresh garlic and ginger. When the turkey is stating to cook and is gaining some colour, add in your homemade sauce. The sauce used for this at Lemongrass Fusion consists of chilli garlic and chilli ginger mixed with some brown sugar and organic cranberries.

When the turkey is fully cooked, you can add in some vegetables. Starting with red pepper, yellow pepper, green pepper, carrots, sliced courgettes and last but not least, sliced onions.

Next up before plating, add your fresh scallions to the pan followed by some organic cranberry.

To garnish, use scallions and fresh chilli.

For the side dish, start with sautéing the pork belly. Before sautéing the pork belly, it must be braised for two hours. Add in your shallots too.

The next ingredient is some precooked Brussel Sprouts followed by garlic.

For the dressing use three table spoons of red wine vinegar and a pinch of brown sugar.

Add some chilli and sesame oil and then it is ready to plate.


Mincemeat Crumble Cake

Rachel Allen


  • 100 g (3 ½ oz) butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 100 g (3 ½ oz) soft light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tblsp milk
  • 175 g (6oz) self-raising flour
  • 550 g (1lb 3oz) mincemeat (to make it yourself, see below)
  • icing sugar, for dusting
  • double or regular cream, whipped, to serve

for the crumble topping:

  • 100 g (3 ½ oz) self-raising flour, sifted
  • 75 g (3oz) caster sugar
  • 75 g (3oz) butter, chilled and cut into 1cm (1/2 in) cubes
  • 25 g (1oz) flaked almonds

22 cm (8 ½ in) diameter spring-form or loose-bottomed cake tin with 6cm (2 ½ in) sides


Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°C), Gas mark 4, and butter the sides and base of the cake tin. If you’re using a spring-form tin, make sure the base of the tin is upside down, so there’s no lip and the cake can slide off easily when cooked.

First make the crumble topping. Place the flour and caster sugar in a bowl, then add the butter and, using your fingertips, rub it in until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Stir in the almonds and set aside.

To make the sponge, first cream the butter until soft in a large bowl or in an electric food mixer. Add the sugar and beat until the mixture is light and fluffy.

Whisk the eggs together in a small bowl with the vanilla extract and milk for a few seconds or just until mixed, then gradually add them to the creamed butter mixture, beating all the time.
Sift in the flour and fold in gently to combine.

Tip the mixture into the prepared tin, then spoon in the mincemeat, spreading it evenly over the batter, before sprinkling over the crumble topping.

Place on the lowest shelf in the oven and bake for 45–50 minutes or until golden brown on top and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out just clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin for 20 minutes, then loosen around the edges using a small, sharp knife and remove the sides of the tin before carefully transferring the cake to a serving plate.

Dust the cake with lots of icing sugar, then serve warm with softly whipped cream.