Donal Skehan

Thai Beef and Mango Salad


I am addicted to really fresh and vibrant Asian flavours like the ones in this dish. People have mixed feelings about coriander, but I am a complete convert; it really enhances the taste of a dish like this.  Don't worry too much about having all the ingredients, and feel free to chop and change as you wish.  Make sure to slice your beef as thinly as you can to make all the difference to every mouthful! Don’t panic about having all the right veggies – if you can get the steak and the dressing sorted, the rest can vary.  Vegetarian Option: Rather than using beef, serve on top of cooked thin rice noodles, they will soak up all that delicious dressing.

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Asian Pork Lettuce Cups

YouTube Asian Pork Lettuce Cups_2

I want to introduce you to what is easily one of my favourite little dinner-party treats. This dish tastes amazing and I hope it will become one of your staple entertaining recipes. The meat mix is full of really light and aromatic flavours and is served in baby gem lettuce leaves, making it perfect finger food.  Vegetarian option: use Quorn mince which works quite well here.

Serves 4
1 tbsp sunflower oil
250g (9oz) lean pork mince
3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
1 tbsp fish sauce (nam pla)
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp caster sugar
5 spring onions, finely chopped
8 fresh mint leaves, roughly torn
A small handful of coriander, roughly torn

To serve
2 baby gem lettuces, separated into leaves
Thai sweet chilli sauce
Juice of 1 lime

Heat the sunflower oil in a large frying pan over a high heat, add the pork mince and fry for 2–3 minutes or until the mince is tender, breaking the mince up with a spoon as it cooks.
Add the garlic and chilli and fry for a further minute.
Add the fish sauce, soy sauce and sugar and stir through, frying for another minute until you have a good colour on the meat.
Finally add half the spring onions, coriander, mint and the lime juice and fry for 1–2 minutes until the spring onions are just tender. Remove from the heat and allow to cool until just warm.
Place 1 heaped tablespoon of the aromatic pork in each baby gem lettuce leaf, top with a drizzle of Thai sweet chilli sauce and a garnish with the remaining spring onions, coriander and mint.

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Honey Chilli Prawn Skewers

Prawns can be a little daunting if you haven’t cooked them before but to be honest they literally take minutes under the grill and this really simple recipe transforms them into the perfect sweet and spicy party food! They can be tricky if you can’t get your hands on the prawns prepared, but don’t be put off if you can’t. Simply spend a few minutes removing the heads and peeling the outer shells, and they are ready to rock.

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Asian Chicken Salad with Chilli, Ginger and Lime Dressing

Packed with tasty ingredients, this recipe is perfect for entertaining. You can prepare all the ingredients separately, stick them in the fridge and assemble the salad when your guests arrive. Don’t be afraid to add other vegetables here, peppers, cucumber, spring onions and bean sprouts are all tasty additions.

Serves 4

2 tablespoon of soy sauce
Juice of lime
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
red chilli, finely chopped
thumb sized piece of ginger minced

3 tablespoons of sunflower oil
1 tablespoon of soy sauce
1 tablespoon of smooth peanut butter
Juice of lime
2 teaspoons of honey
1 teaspoon of sesame oil
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
red chilli, finely chopped
thumb sized piece of ginger minced

4 chicken breasts, sliced thinly into strips
1 Chinese cabbage, slice thinly
3 carrots, sliced thinly
1 red onion, sliced thinly
100g of sugar snap peas, sliced thinly
100g of chopped peanuts to serve
A handful of chopped coriander to serve

Add the chicken strips to a mixing bowl with the marinade ingredients and mix through.  Cover and place in the fridge while you prepare the salad and dressing.

In a small bowl add all the ingredients for the dressing and whisk to combine.

Place the Chinese cabbage, carrots, red onion, and sugar snap peas in a large salad bowl.  Add half the dressing and combine until all the vegetables are well coated.

Fry the chicken strips until golden brown and cooked through. Approximately 2 minutes either side.

Serve the salad in individual bowls topped with the chicken, a sprinkling of chopped peanuts, a little chopped coriander and a extra drizzle of the dressing.

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Chilli, Garlic and Lime Dublin Bay Prawns

I use a microplane grater to mince the garlic and chilli, its a really handy kitchen gadget. To butterfly a Dublin bay prawn, run a knife from the head to tail, being careful not to cut all the way through, then gently flatten it out.

Serves 2
8 Dublin bay prawns or langoustines, butterflied
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red chilli, minced
1 tablespoon of olive oil
juice of 1 lime
lime wedges and chopped coriander, to serve

Place all the ingredients in a bowl and toss the prawns to coat.

Heat a large griddle pan, and add the prawns.

Cook for 2-3 minutes either side or until cooked through.

Transfer the prawns to a serving plate, sprinkle with a little chopped coriander and serve with some lime wedges.

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