Donal Skehan
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  • Street food at the bustling market in Sapa- this lady was selling spicy pigs ear salad... #DonalVietnam
  • Morning market shopping in Sapa! On the way to Hanoi... #DonalVietnam
  • BBQ Pork with ginger, turmeric, mint and toasted sesame seeds... #DonalVietnam
  • Just can't get over the stunning scenery here! Not bad for a Tuesday! #DonalVietnam
  • On the streets of Sapa making apple wine with apples grown by the Hmong tribe... #DonalVietnam
  • Sad to say goodbye to our fantastic Red Dao hosts for the past three days... Heading to Hanoi tomorrow to focus on street food! #DonalVietnam
  • The incredible dry store at the top of a Red Dao tribe house- here they store corn, rice and pumpkins through the winter. The kitchen is just underneath so the heat and smoke helps to dry the produce out... #DonalVietnam
  • Brilliant few days filming with the Red Dao tribe just outside Sapa! #DonalVietnam with @jonnyrocksville @lenocks...
  • Best experience of the day- a traditional herbal bath with herbs picked from the mountain and steeped in boiling water! It is used to soak the muscles after a hard day in the rice paddies! Nothing like taking a bath with a big group of strangers watching! :) #DonalVietnam
  • This little girl is eating sticky rice cooked in a bamboo shoot! The rice is stuffed into the hollow shoot and sealed with a banana leaf, then boiled until tender... Then the whole rice filled bamboo shoot is grilled over an open fire- it results in a chewy sweet rice cylinder with the most incredible texture! Really special! #DonalVietnam
  • The colourful and detailed clothing the women of the Red Dao tribe wear can take up to a year to embroider by hand... #DonalVietnam
  • Incredible day spent learning from and cooking with the Red Dao tribe in North West Vietnam- their are 5 different tribes in this area and each has their own language and distinctive traditional clothing... #DonalVietnam
  • View from my breakfast table! Stayed in Sa Pa last night high in the mountains, 1500 meters above sea level... Off to spend the day with a local Red Dao family to learn more about their traditions... #DonalVietnam
  • Have just eaten from this fairly intimating platter of mystery meat! You choose what you want from pig tongue, liver, heart and blood sausage and it gets boiled up and served with a fiery hot dipping sauce with chilli, meat broth, fish sauce and spring onions. Also interesting they eat it with potato noodles rather than rice noodles, in broth and mint... Swallow the fear, get in there and eat like the locals do! #DonalVietnam
  • Chicken for sale at Bac Ha market- incredible experience, like nothing else, have whiplash from everything I have to look at! #DonalVietnam
  • Flower Hmong tribe at Bac Ha market this morning selling fresh vegetables and sugar cane... #DonalVietnam
  • Great meal this evening! Finally in Sapa after the longest bus ride ever today 8am-11.30pm! Up early tomorrow morning to film at Bac Ha Market... #DonalVietnam
  • BBQ pork and pumpkin greens at the most rocking little restaurant in Sapa! #DonalVietnam
  • Wok fried lunch today! Lots of greens including Morning Glory or water spinach stir fried with pork fat and fish sauce... #DonalVietnam
  • Rice fields on the way up to Sapa... #DonalVietnam
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Filming at Sheridans Irish Food Festival

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It's been a couple of very busy weeks, getting FEAST all finished and launched, plus we've been fitting in the filming of the new series of Kitchen Hero: HomeCooked, (on RTÉ One from June 11th) each weekend at different festivals throughout Ireland.  On Saturday we were at Trim castle and then on Sunday we finished our current run of filming at the fabulous Sheridans Irish Food Festival.

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Introducing FEAST: A Dinner Journal

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An idea that started a long time ago, has finally come to life today and I am very thrilled to introduce you to FEAST: A Dinner Journal!  It's a unique quarterly food magazine which celebrates seasonal eating. All the features within the magazine lead to one final meal and a celebration of passionate food producers and craft.   It's been quite a journey to get to today and we have travelled all over Ireland to shoot the photography for each separate feature. 

In this first issue the focus is on, just some of Ireland's most exciting names in food, who have kindly shared their recipes for a course in our FEAST.  A small but very dedicated team have worked with me on this so a massive thank you to Ross Golden Bannon, Sharon Hearne Smith, Jane Matthews and Sofie Larsson for all the time and long hours put in.

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HomeCooked Newsletter | May 2013

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HomeCooked TV Shoot_7Hi guys!

Welcome to May, sunnier skies, longer evenings and best of all lots of wonderful new season produce!

This month it's all go with the new series of Kitchen Hero: HomeCooked, we are continuing to film before the show starts June 11th on RTÉ One.  We had a great week here in my own home kitchen cooking lots of baking recipes but it's also been so much fun to be out and about visiting festivals across Ireland.

The big news I've been waiting to tell you all, is that this month I'm launching my very own quarterly magazine online.  It's called Feast: A Dinner Journal and is a celebration of seasonal food which I've been creating alongside some very talented people over the last few weeks.  The first issue will be available online free for all on the 16th of May and you can sign up to be the first to recieve it here.

Kitchen Hero: Great Food For Less starts on Good Food Channel in the UK on Monday 13th of May with two back to back episodes at 7pm.  I'll be taking part in a twitter takeover right after the show on Monday night, answering questions via the Good Food Channel twitter page.

This month make sure to check out Delicious Magazine for my lemon and blueberry slices and Good Food Magazine for my Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches and recipes from the Kitchen Hero: Great Food For Less TV show.  This weekend the Irish Independent are also featuring the recipes from the food shoot myself and Kate Packwood from the Wild Flour Bakery put together, so make sure to pick up a copy.

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Ballymaloe LitFest and a postcard from my mortifying/proud childhood…

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Yes, I'm afraid to admit, that bespeckled boy with the tea towel on on his head, demonstrating how to make homemade pizza, is me… You may be wondering why the strange get up, but to me it was quite clear at the time, that with my jam jar glasses, I was a dead ringer for the Queen of Irish food, Darina Allen.  It made complete sense to set up my dad's video camera with the help of my best friend, dressed as Delia Smith, to present the forgotten episode of Darina's TV show "Simply Delicious: The Cook Off", complete with my best impression of Darina's dulcet tones.  Clearly it would have been a ratings winner!

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