Elly Pear’s new recipes for real life
Food File: Feast of fermentation, gastro Masters and SuperValu’s Wagyu beef
Elly Curshen aka Elly Pear: building blocks for healthy eating
Elly Pear’s first book, Fast Days and Feast Days, catered to advocates of the 5:2 diet. It sold extremely well, but the market for her second, Let’s Eat!, is less restrictive. It is aimed at those who want to get healthy, tasty, interesting food on the table every evening, in double-quick time – most of us, in other words.
In a clever approach, the Bristol cafe owner begins by sharing her top five freezable batch-cook recipes, accompanied by recipes explaining how to serve each base up in four completely different ways, so you’ve potentially got 20 different dinners in the freezer.
A building-block recipe chapter expands the repertoire, introducing useful and adaptable skills such as how to make 10-minute flatbreads, and home-made labneh. The final section of the book has menu suggestions for a series of diverse occasions, from “baby-shower brunch for a crowd with breast-feeding mums who could eat a horse” to “weekend brunch for four people with slightly sore heads”.
This book is about real-life, non-fussy cooking that also manages to be interesting and delicious. You won’t find any meat – it’s pescatarian – but that’s beside the point (and that’s a good thing). Let’s Eat!, by Elly Pear, is published this week by Thorsons, £20.
The Organic Centre in Rossinver, Co Leitrim, hosts its second International Irish Fermentation Festival this weekend, with guest appearances from UK food writer and teacher Charlotte Pike, and food scientist Maya Hey, who is undertaking a doctorate at Concordia University in Montreal.
Pike, whose 2015 book, Fermented, has become a bestseller, will be doing a workshop at Neantóg Kitchen Garden School on Saturday, June 17th (2-5pm), and Hey will do an advanced fermenting class aimed at chefs on Monday, June 19th at the Riverside Hotel in Sligo (2-5pm).
There will be a chance to learn from both at the Organic Centre on Sunday, June 18th, when there will be a full-day programme of talks, with speakers also including seaweed and foraging expert Dr Prannie Rhatigan, chef JP McMahon, The Cultured Club author Dearbhla Reynolds and food scientist and fermentation specialist April Danann. For more details see theorganiccentre.ie
Danann will also be speaking at this weekend’s Cork Summer Show, with a talk on “The Art of Fermentation” on Saturday, June 17th at 4pm. Just ahead of that, at 3pm, Caroline Murphy of West Cork Eggs, food writer Kate Ryan and Alison Kingston, health coach and eating psychologist, will present “Get Kids Cooking: Eggsellent Breakfasts”.
Get a gastronomy degree
The School of Culinary Arts and Food Technology at Dublin Institute of Technology has got the green light for Ireland’s first Masters programme in Gastronomy and Food Studies, which will be accepting students this September.
The MA programme will run part-time, over two academic years, and Dr Máirtín Mac Con Iomaire, who has been instrumental in establishing the Dublin Gastronomy Symposium, is the programme chair. Application forms are now available from DIT and June 30th is the deadline. Further information is available by telephoning 01-4024344
SuperValu has launched a range of Irish Wagyu beef, with the Japanese breed being reared for the retailer by Wexford farmer Karl Strehlow. Waygu is known for its heavy marbling, and with fat equating to flavour, it can be some of the tastiest beef available.
Wagyu steaks – fillet, rib eye and striploin – are now available in Supervalu in Ballincollig, Skibbereen, Clonakilty and Wexford, with a range of burgers made with the beef on sale in stores nationwide. The beef will be available while stocks last and the project has taken two years to bring to market.