Fun, friends and delicous food!

I had such a wonderful time at Taste of Dublin this year, every year it just keeps getting better and better, I cannot believe it was my 10th year there, and I cannot wait for the next 10!

It is always such a fun weekend with delicious food, entertainment, lots of buzz and inspiration! I got to meet and catch up with lots of my fellow foodie friends – Jeeny Maltese, Rachel Allen, Holly White, Kwanghi Chan, and of course my great friend Erica Drum who did a spectaular job as host and MC for the weekend and I am so thankful to the team at Taste, everyone behind the scenes who made everything run so smoothly and the wonderful Billie O’Shea, for organizing a birthday surprise, and to everyone who came and watched my cookery demonstration, despite a little bit of bad weather during the day, it did not put people off and they arrived in their crowds.

The first dish I prepared was a beautiful Panzanella style, Italian inspired Strawberry Salad with West Cork mozzarella, toasted pine nuts, crispy garlic and herb sourdough croutons drizzled with a creamy balsamic dressing, a truly fresh summer salad all served on a large platter, great for putting in the middle of the table for everyone to enjoy. Proudly, all ingredients for my demonstration were from Irish and local producers. Also to mention, the strawberries used in both my dishes from O’Neills in Carlingford, I arrived with 5 kg of Strawberries (yes 5kg!) But, these were not ordinary strawberries, they were in fact ‘Jam Strawberries’ you know the ones that ‘don’t make the cut’ to sell, some were big, some small, some a little wonky looking but still utterly delicious, and perfect for my salad, cheesecake and anything else really!! I even took home the ones I didn’t use and made a big pot of Strawberry Jam the next day.

Suppliers included; 

Honey & Sourdough Bread – Strandfield, Dundalk, Co. Louth

Strawberries – O’Neills Farm, Willville, Carlingford, Co.Louth 

Mozzarella – Toonsbridge Dairy, Co. Cork

Balsamic Vinegar – Lilliput Trading, Stoneybatter, Co. Dublin. 

Comeragh Salad leaves and vegetables – The Country Store Dungarvan, Co. Waterford

Achill Island Sea Salt 

Herbs from my beautiful garden

My next dish was my show-stopping White Chocolate, Strawberry and Passionfruit Cheesecake with an outer white chocolate wall  (I really do think I deserve a place in the Bake Off after this one).

I used caramelly ‘Biscoff’ biscuits with Irish butter as my base, cream cheese, greek yoghurt, double cream, my homemade vanilla essence and my insurance policy – gelatine! I then swirled in my homemade strawberry sauce and passion fruit puree and let it set. Now here’s one I made earlier – my white chocolate wall, it worked perfectly every other time I made it, but working outdoors, temperature control and trying to temper white chocolate in that environment it was proving tricky and kept cracking, nevertheless we kept at it, said a prayer and thankfully all went well on stage (breath a sigh of relief) and I was delighted with how everything turned out.

We finished the night off at the Schweppes cocktail bar, gorgeous food at Bites by Kwanghi and a little dance! 

Now that Taste is over for this year, why not continue your culinary journey with me, and as a proud partner  of the Mastercard Priceless Taste Digital Series, you can regularly follow my exclusive recipes and digital cook-a-longs at Mastercard Priceless – Taste Digital Series

Until next year.


Aisling Signature