Mary and Luke Aston are typical examples of the dynamic and talented people who are moving the Loop Head peninsular towards deserved prominence. This very short film introduces Mary's wonderful baking and cooking of fresh mackerel, caught by guests at the B&B.
We were delighted to be a part of the Skibb Food Festival this year, when we met with some like-minded friends and read from our favourite cookery books. The location was the magical Time Traveller's Bookshop and here, as promised, is the list of books we read from:
Richard Olney: Simple French Food (Grub Street)
Patience Gray: Honey From A Weed (Prospect Books)
MFK Fisher: The Art of Eating (Vintage)
Michael Pollan: The Omnivore's Dilemma (Allen Lane/Penguin)
Back in 1989 the great American writer and farmer, Wendell Berry, polished off a little essay entitled “The Pleasures of Eating”. It was in this brief and thoughtful piece that Berry first coined the line that has come to be most closely associated with his work: “Eating is an agricultural act”, wrote the farmer from Kentucky, and when he drew up a set of seven rules to help people to “eat responsibly”, the third rule went like this: “Learn the origins of the food you buy, and buy the food that is produced closest to your home.
Some artists are just so far out there that you can't imagine the place where their head lives.
Glenn Gould? Where's that at? Sun Ra? From another planet, he said, and we agree. John Coltrane? Not of this earth, surely.
And then there's Judith Berkson.
At harvest-time and on the eve of national organic week farmers like Jimmy and Bernadine Mulhall of Coolanowle Farm in County Laois, are quintessential examples of how farmers are seizing the day and seizing control of their destiny. Today the Mulhalls open their on-site farm shop, a vital complement to their hugely successful farmers' market van, both of which sell the wonderful produce of their 300 organic acres.
The Bridgestone Electric Picnic forums were fun, lively, amusing and, most importantly, they showed a curious disconnect between how food appears in the media in which many of the participants work, and how food gets discussed when these people sit down together.
Why does Electric Picnic work? What persuades 30,000 sensible people to trek down to Stradbally to mingle and muck-in with their contemporaries of all ages?
The music at Electric Picnic is both memory lane – I saw Roxy Music the first time they ever appeared on The Old Grey Whistle Test! – and the avant garde – Robyn is currently the best and smartest pop star on the planet and if you don't swoon to “Dancing On My Own” then you don't have a soul, or at least a pair of dancing shoes.
It all seems a bit too good to be true. Arrayed on my desk are a number of magic potions, potions which portend good things for our health.
When the study from Ulm University first hit the media, the headlines were stark: “Burgers linked to childhood asthma”, roared The Irish Times online. Even when the headline in the printed newspaper had tenderised somewhat by the next morning – “Fruit and fish cut asthma risk - study” – the story still asserted that “Children who eat three or more burgers a week may be at a higher risk of asthma and wheezing”.