HomeArticles Posted by Conor Bofin (Page 5)

Author: Conor Bofin

Spotted DogThere are many ‘versions’ of the story of St. Patrick. Given the time of year, I thought I should clarify the situation and give you the cold hard facts about the man. The first thing we know is that he was Welsh. This we know by the type of crosier he carried. There are rumours that he might have been a Scotsman but any sheep farmer knows that the Scottish crozier has a very different head to the Welsh. Scottish sheep have a thicker necks than Welsh and as a result, the Scottish crozier has a more open crook, making it useless for snake scooping. St. Patrick hunted snakes with the aid of a dalmatian hound. In fact, the great Irish patron saint named one of the three (for there are only three) traditional Irish foods after the dog.

Beef Short Ribs with Anise (7 of 9)Around these parts, having one’s cake and eating it is deemed not to be possible. The same goes in Italy where they say “Volere la botte piena e la moglie ubriaca” – to want the barrel full and the wife drunk. In Hungary, they say “Egy fenékkel nem lehet két lovat megülni” – It is impossible to ride two horses with one butt. I take issue with this defeatism. You can have the best of both worlds, if beef short ribs with a little Oriental twist is your thing. 

Daub of Beef (3 of 10)The very mention of the ‘Last Chance Saloon’ brings up imagery of gnarled and grizzled old men leaning their heavy elbows on the greasy bar of despair as they reflect on wasted lives and opportunity forgone. Thankfully, I’m not one of those, at least not yet. There is a double whammy of last chance about this recipe all the same. But, that’s no reason to not cook it. (That was a double negative about a double whammy BTW.)

Featherblade steak (2 of 9)Steak night is a great concept. Particularly if one can get one’s hands on top quality meat. We are lucky in that respect. But, steak night would be no fun if we just cooked and ate a steak. We needed a bit of experimentation as we did with part 1. For part 2, we decided to check out the merits of Feather Blade steak both flash fried and sous vide. 

Monkfish with red peppercorn sauce (1 of 8)

This is one for the men only. Ladies, while I like having you here and enjoy your company, this is an all male zone today. Now, before you start chaining yourselves to the oven door, this is for your benefit. I’m giving the lads a bit of advice about how to redeem themselves after they forget to do something important. So, girls, be off with you. Lads, read on…..

Rib eye with bone marrow (6 of 9)We decided to have a themed dinner during the week. Hence, Steak Night was invented. However, there is no point in just cooking some steak. I needed to do something a little different. I got to wondering what I could do to add an additional belt of flavour to some already tasty dry aged rib eye steaks. The first thing to do is to make a tasty sauce using five ingredients – Wine (of course), concentrated beef stock, shallots, salt and pepper.  So what, I hear you say, you’ve made that sauce before. And your’e right. But, what about adding some bone marrow to the mix? Will that give things the hit I think they need?

 

Americans, you have lost your way. Dark forces have taken over your once great land. The US of A has fallen foul of deception and now operates to low, low standards. This is not an alternative fact. This is reality and you had better get used to it. Yes, Americans, by and large, you no longer make your own Mac ‘n’ Cheese! You buy packets of stuff and reconstitute it. Revitalising the constitution is something that you may have to do very soon. So keep your reconstituting for matters political. Keep it out of the kitchen. 

Holy Lord! It’s cold around here. Temperatures had dropped below freezing and I had got myself into a real deep winter gloom. This was driven by a number of factors. Firstly, it’s winter. Secondly, we seem to be living in very pessimistic times. Thirdly, the media have been whipping up a storm about the cold weather. One newspaper here in Ireland was telling us to expect “Thundersnow”. They also reported on roads grinding to a halt and flights being cancelled. Thankfully, I’m not completely gullible to this shock tactic journalism. I read elsewhere that “Thundersnow” is not a meteorological term. I also found out that the only flights that were cancelled from Dublin were because of snow in London. Pathetic standards. But the sort of journalism we must expect in a clickbait, post truth world. Now, back to the chicken…

I get a lot of fun out of the blog. It keeps me in touch with friends old and new from all parts of the globe. I learn lots and hopefully I give a little back. One of the ‘friends’ I have gathered to my metaphorical bosom (being male and of “a certain age” my bosom is most definitely metaphorical) is Adam J. Holland, the oddball Texan and author of the excellent RV Chronicles on his Unorthodox Epicure blog. I have cooked numerous chillies over the last couple of years, having been introduced to “real” chilli by the late and great Richard E. McGary our much missed Dallas blogger. Having received a gift of some chillies, I was delighted to tell Adam that I planned to cook a lamb chilli. His reaction surprised me somewhat….

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