Donal Skehan
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  • Super green broccoli soup for lunch today! :)
  • Apple, cinnamon, honey and toasted pecan porridge with a little almond milk moat for breakfast this morn! Possibly my favourite way of eating oats! :)
  • Ultimate leftover fried rice for lunch today! Coming up on the youtube channel in a few weeks! :)
  • So apparently today is #ChocolateCakeDay- would be rude not to sure this amazeballs Millionaire Chocolate Gold-dust Cake! Who wants a slice? :)
  • Max is on youtube! To watch the full video check out my channel- link in profile! RUFF! 🐶
  • So Max has been keeping the bed warm! 🐶
  • Griddled baby gem, with roast cauliflower and brussels sprouts, red pesto and halloumi chips for lunch! Basically another fridge clear out- but bloomin' delish! :)
  • Healthy Chocolate Fudge with @susanjanekitchen on my youtube channel! Can't remember what was so funny but needless to say we had a good time! :)
  • Sunday swim time for #maxthedog! On the hunt for his ball! :)
  • Introducing guilt free Raw Chocolate Fudge and the incredibly inspiring @susanjanekitchen over on my youtube channel this morning! Link in profile! :)
  • It's the weekend! Which means it's #maxthedog time- have a great weekend folks! It's getting brighter everyday! :)
  • Bloomin' beautiful kale chips up on my youtube channel! Give them a go this weekend- highly addictive! :) (link in profile- subscribe!)
  • #tbt to cooking on NBC's The Today Show in NYC for St. Paddy's Day! :)
  • How to make spicy kale chips on my youtube channel today- check them out link in profile! :)
  • It's breakfast time baby! Check out myself and @thehappypearfood lads cooking up some epic buckwheat pancakes on my youtube channel! Link in profile- have a great Tuesday! :)
  • Burren Smoked Salmon Quiche @pepperpotcafe for lunch! Delicious as always! :)
  • Beat the Monday blues with a slice of Orange Polenta Cake. And guess what... It's GLUTEN FREE! :)
  • Family Sunday lunch today: White wine chicken with salad and greens! :)
  • All about the healthy pancakes this morning on my youtube channel with the lads from @thehappypearfood! Head over and check them out- link in my profile! :)
  • Salmon & Avocado Salad for lunch AKA fridge clean out salad! :)
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Dennis Cotter- For The Love Of Food- Cookbook Competition

No foodies cookbook collection could be considered complete without a Dennis Cotter book in the mix.  Not only are they beautifully written and illustrated, they are full of inspiration for meat free meals and more.  Dennis runs the fantastic Café Paradiso in Cork city where diners are treated to his creations including dishes like “sweet chilli-glazed panfried tofu with asian greens in a coconut & lemongrass broth, soba noodles and a gingered aduki bean wonton” and “rosewater & almond baklava with cardamom yoghurt ice cream and passionfruit syrup”. His latest book, “For The Love Of Food”, does not disappoint and after eating in Cafe Paradiso earlier this year, I was dieing to get my hands on a copy.  The book is broken up into simple straightforward chapters like “Risotto”, “All Wrapped Up”, “Bowls” and “Sweetness” which not only offer up a delicious selection of tempting recipes but are also packed with advice from Dennis.

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Vanilla & Coconut Risotto with Spiced Mango and Pistachio

You can think of this as a risotto for breakfast, which sounds strange, or rice pudding for breakfast – less weird and only a little naughty.  Or you can think of it as rice porridge for breakfast, for what is risotto anyway but rice porridge? This procedure follows the classic risotto method of absorbing liquid into rice in stages, though I would be inclined to let the rice cook a bit more than for a savoury risotto. The recipe calls for sweet wine. This doesn’t mean you have to crack open your precious expensive dessert wines. A slightly sweet Riesling or Muscat is what’s needed, though you might get away with that Liebfraumilch you’ve got hidden away for visiting aunties.

This recipe comes from Dennis Cotter’s “For The Love Of Food”.

Serves 4

For the spiced mango
100g/3oz caster sugar
1 star anise, coarsely ground
4 cloves
1 tsp finely grated fresh ginger
1 large ripe mango

For the vanilla and coconut risotto
400ml/14fl oz milk
1 x 400ml/14fl oz tin of coconut milk
2 tbsp caster sugar
1 vanilla pod
15g/oz butter
200g/7oz Carnaroli or Arborio rice
4 tbsp sweet white wine
finely grated zest of 1 orange
finely grated zest of 1 lime

To serve
2 tbsp shelled pistachio
nuts, coarsely chopped
nutmeg, for grating

First make the spiced syrup for the mango: put the sugar, star anise, cloves and ginger in a small saucepan with 5 tablespoons of water and bring to the boil, then remove from the heat and leave to cool and infuse. Pass the syrup through a fine sieve. Peel the mango and slice the flesh from the stone.

Put half of it in a food processor, add 2 tablespoons of the spice syrup and blend to a purée. Add a little water, if necessary, to get a pouring consistency. Check for flavour and sweetness, and add a little more syrup to taste if it needs it.

Slice the remaining mango into matchsticks and put them in a bowl with a tablespoon of the mango sauce.

To make the risotto: put the milk, coconut milk and sugar in a saucepan and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to at a simmer. Split the vanilla pod lengthways and scrape the pulp into the milk. Heat the butter in a wide, heavy pan over medium heat, add the rice and toast it, stirring, for 5 minutes. Add the white wine and simmer until it has been absorbed. Add a ladle or 2 of the hot milk mixture.  Stirring often, let this simmer until it has been absorbed, then add more of it.

Continue in this way for about 20 minutes, until the rice is tender and you have a nice porridgey texture. Stir in the citrus zest.

Serve the risotto in shallow bowls. Pour over a little mango sauce and place some of the sliced mango on top. Scatter over the pistachios, grate over a little nutmeg and serve.

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Quinoa and Green Salad with Mango Dressing

Quinoa is such a nutritious and versatile pantry item. It makes great salads and who could say no to a fresh summery dressing made with beautiful mangos.

Serves 2
cup quinoa
2 large handfuls of green beans
3 cups mixed salad leaves

Mango Dressing
2 ripe mangos
2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
1 cup fresh basil leaves
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Cook the quinoa as per the packet instructions. Set the cooked quinoa aside and allow to cool. Blanch the green beans and refresh them in cold water to keep the bright green colour.

Add the flesh from the mangos, balsamic vinegar, basil leaves and olive oil to a large jug and blend with a hand blender briefly.

Add the cold quinoa, beans and salad leaves to a large bowl. Pour a generous amount of the mango dressing onto the salad and toss.

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Thai Beef and Mango Salad

mangobeefsalad3

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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