I love food and have done so for a very long time now, from being a child - one of my earliest memories is of my mother giving me delicious fresh from the farmyard eggs in a cup mixed with a bit of butter when I was a very wee toddler, to being a bit older and giving the siblings Galtee cheese with blackcurrant jam sandwiches when I was left in charge of them and their lunch for the day - funnily enough I don't recall them being too impressed with my culinary prowess!
I remember, with love and longing, the crab claws Dad would bring home that would be roasted on top of the range in the kitchen and cracked open and eaten - in those dark and distant days there was no "meas" (respect) for crab claws and they only sold the bodies. As for the scallops - oh my oh my - down to the strand we'd go when there was low tide and fill our bags, huge juicy scallops fried in a bit of butter - heaven on earth! Getting up at 6a.m. to go foraging for field mushrooms and frying them with a bit of butter, making homemade mushroom soup - the likes of which I've never tasted since! Unfortunately wild mushrooms are harder to be got in that neck of the woods nowadays with fertiliser being liberally applied to the fields.
When there was work going on in the farm, hay making, cutting the turf etc., I wouldn't go and dirty my hands with that, nope, I'd stay home and do the dinner and the tea for the men instead and maybe squeeze in a chapter or two of my current book along the way. Then at the age of 16 I decided to make a special meal for my parents, myself and my 3 siblings for the parent's 20th anniversary and I got a duck , yes one ickle duck for all 6 of us and my father a farming man with a farming man's appetite, needless to say a pan of sausages and rashers went on shortly afterwards!
So over the years I've dibbled and dabbled in food, at one stage I supplied a fish shop with salads, seafood vol au vents, dressed salmons and the like. I did bed and breakfast in my home for 12 years and provided the guests with a beautiful breakfast menu at a time when the standard fare would have been the full Irish - take it or leave it! Also made evening meals for them using simple local produce - local lamb and spanking fresh seafood.
Life moves on and 2 and 2/3 years ago I met Billy, our first conversation was about the merits of wine - said conversation washed down with copious quantities of Jack Daniels by yours truly! Turned out Billy is a bit of a foodie too. One of the highlights of our time together has been a visit to a Michelin Star restaurant -Il Buco - in Sorrento, foodgasmic! Our "together time" on a Saturday night is spent cooking and eating. During the week we plan what's going on the menu, going thru our large collection of cookery books, then Saturday afternoon we gather together our ingredients and cook and eat and wash it down with some vino! It has resulted in some fantastic food, a lot of which has been photographed for the food blog.... so here we are food blogging!