Compiled by MARIE-CLAIRE DIGBY
These pretty labels, lids, ribbons and gift tags will make your home-made jams and preserves look very gift-worthy. They are from kitchencookware.ie(€11.49 for 24).
The eat on the street
We’ve been a bit slow to catch on the the street food craze that has spread from the US to London – apart from at music festivals, where you can now eat very well indeed from mobile units. At this weekend’s Electric Picnic, Bridgestone Guide editors John and Sally McKenna will be presenting awards for the best food offerings, including a Picnicers’ Choice. Their green VW camper van will be parked at the Theatre of Food, where people can cast their vote for the best place to eat at the festival. If you’d like to see what’s on offer in the UK, by comparison, the British Street Food awards might be just the excuse for a trip. On Saturday and Sunday, September 15th and 16th, the cobbled area outside Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen restaurant in Hoxton, east London, will be packed with vendors vying to provide the best street food. Guardian columnist Richard Johnson, author of Street Food Revolution, will be joined by fellow judges Gizzi Erskine, Thomasina Miers, Yianni Papoutsis and Fay Ripley, to find winners in a number of categories. The event is part of a week-long celebration of the 10th birthday of Fifteen, and you can buy tickets (£8) at fifteenstreet.co.uk.
Marina O’Loughlin @MarinaOLoughlin: Dear @gilescoren, love you but think you sound like total numpty when you diss Italy’s food. RT @gilescoren: @MarinaOLoughlin: f**k off Marina. It’s hurtful and bitchy and pompous. When I want career advice from you I’ll f**king ask for it.
Giles Coren @gilescoren: HUGE congrats to @MarinaOLoughlin as Guardian hires its first proper rezzy critic since @matthewfort. Now all it needs is a business plan.
Cooking with couverture
If you don’t have a gang of children to use as your excuse for a visit to the Butlers Chocolate Visitors’ Centre in Clonshaugh, Dublin 17, you could sign up for one of the new cooking with chocolate classes being given by Ruth Wassel. You’ll get to see eight or nine recipes being cooked,while you sip a glass of Prosecco and sample some chocolate. The classes cost €40 and can be booked by emailing email@example.com or by telephone: 01-671 0599. Next Friday the company launches a range of couverture chocolates specially made for cooking. Just the thing to stock up on before TV3’s The Great Irish Bake-Off kicks off this autumn. You can buy it from Butlers Chocolate Cafés and online at butlerschocolates.com, €5 for a 300g pack.
There are more than 1,000 food producers in Ireland who grow organically, and you can support their work by putting a few new things in your shopping trolley during National Organic Week (September 10th-16th). Farm visits, film screenings, open door tastings and organic markets are all part of the line-up for the week.
Full details at bordbia.ie
And granny came too
Copenhagen Cooking, a 10-day celebration of Nordic cooking and culinary invention, comes to a close today, and among the festival’s fresh new ideas was a spin on Restaurant Week, during which top restaurants in cities all over the world offer prixe fixe meals at reduced prices. It wasn’t quite as simple as picking up the phone and booking a table in Copenhagen though; to get the deal at Noma you had to be under 20 years of age, while at Thai restaurant Kiin Kiin, you had to be a student, or be accompanied by a grandparent.
The Cliff Town House Oyster Festival runs from next Wednesday to Sunday (September 5th-9th) at the hotel and restaurant on St Stephen’s Green, Dublin, with free masterclasses on topics such as oyster and beer matching; natives versus gigas, with shucking tips for both, and a session with chef Sean Smith on selecting, preparing and cooking scallops. The classes are free but are reserved for the first 10 diners booking for dinner each day of the festival. See theclifftownhouse.com