Sensational summer food: around the world in 26 dishes

Cook your way around the world in your own home with this bumper collection of recipes from Paul Flynn, Lilly Higgins, Domini Kemp, Jess Murphy, Gary O'Hanlon and more


Eunice Power and her summer salad. Photograph: Harry Weir
Eunice Power and her summer salad. Photograph: Harry Weir

Nothing says “Hello Summer!” like a playful green summer leaf salad, the sort you could make with leaves gathered from your garden or bought by the bumper bunch in a foreign produce market. Or yes, this summer, more likely purchased at the supermarket or farmers’ market.

Edible flowers add a splash of colour and glamour. This summer has been particularly kind to the garden – the warmth and moisture providing the perfect growing conditions and, more unusually, the lockdown period having afforded many plots to be given the undivided attention and focus of their owners.

The base of this salad is lettuce, butterhead and oakleaf, with some perpetual spinach and oriental leaves mixed in for colour, texture and flavour. I have added pickled radishes to make the salad even more ravishing. I find that pickling brings the radishes on to another level in terms of flavour and colour, and adds an oriental twist.

Eunice Power is a chef and caterer

Serves six

8 handfuls of salad leaves, as many varieties as you like
2 handfuls of soft green herbs. I use basil, mint, coriander, fennel and parsley
A handful of mixed edible flowers, borage, chives, marigold petals

For the elderflower dressing
30ml elderflower cordial
Juice of one lime
50ml sunflower oil
50ml olive oil
Bunch of chives, finely chopped
Salt and pepper

For the pickled radish
A bunch of radishes, topped and tailed and finely sliced on a mandolin
1tsp sea salt
2tbsp rice vinegar
1tbsp caster sugar

For the dressing: Mix the ingredients together in a screw top jar and shake well.

2 For the pickled radish: Place the radish in a colander, sprinkle with sea salt and toss to combine. Leave for 20 minutes.

3 While the radish is resting, place 185ml of water with the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan over a medium heat and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and cool.

4 Rinse the radish, squeezing out any excess water, and place in a bowl. Pour over the pickling liquid and stand for one hour. Strain before serving.

5 Very gently rinse the leaves and herbs, and give them a gentle spin to take off excess moisture.

6 Gently dress the salad leaves and the pickled radish with two to three tablespoons of elderflower dressing, giving a light coating, taking care not to bruise the leaves. Arrange on a platter or shallow bowl and sprinkle edible flowers on top.

Serves four, as a starter

Crunchy Caprese.

1 ball buffalo mozzarella
1 head fennel, sliced
1 head celery, sliced
1 tin borlotti beans, rinsed and drained
2 heads Cos lettuce

For the dressing
1tbsp wholegrain mustard
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1tbsp honey or agave syrup
6tbsp olive oil
3tbsp balsamic vinegar
Good pinch turmeric
A little grated ginger
Salt and pepper

Make the dressing by mixing the mustard, garlic, honey and then whisking in the olive oil, very slowly.

2 Then whisk in the vinegar, ginger and turmeric.

3 Tear up the mozzarella and mix with the fennel, celery and beans.

4 Toss in the dressing, add the lettuce, mix well and serve.

Serves four

Florence fennel, radicchio and apple salad with roasted pecans.

2 bulbs fennel
1 head radicchio, torn
2 Granny Smith apples
Half bunch fresh dill, finely chopped
2 large lemons, juiced and zested
4tbsp extra virgin olive oil
40g pecans
2tsp Cajun seasoning
2tsp demerara sugar
Sea salt and cracked black pepper

Preheat an oven to 180 degrees Celsius or equivalent.

2 Place the pecans on a lined baking tray. Season with demerara sugar, Cajun seasoning and a drizzle of olive oil.

3 Roast for three to five minutes and then give the pecans a mix and roast for a further three to five minutes. Keep an eye on them because they will cook quickly.

4 Remove from the oven and set aside.

5 Put the juice and zest of the lemons into a large mixing bowl.

6 Thinly cut the fennel and add straight to the lemon juice, so it doesn’t go brown.

7 Core the apples, slice into thin wedges and add them to the bowl.

8 Add the torn radicchio and dill, and season generously with salt and pepper.

9 Transfer to a serving dish, scatter the roasted pecans over the top and serve.

Serves four

Warm beetroot salad with smashed feta,orange and pumpkin seeds. Photograph: Harry Weir
Photograph: Harry Weir

4 medium sized beetroot, peeled and cut into large chunks
2 oranges , 1 squeezed, 1 segmented
50ml olive oil
200g feta cheese
1tsp honey
4tbsp natural yoghurt
A small pinch of dried chilli flakes
2tbsp pumpkin seeds, toasted
Lots of picked fresh dill

Preheat an oven to 140 degrees Celsius, or equivalent.

2 Wash the beetroot and wrap each one in foil.

3 Cook for 1.5 hours, or until soft (test with a knife).

4 When they are cool, peel them and cut into chunks.

5 Add the orange juice to a pan and whisk in the olive oil.

6 Add the beetroot, season, then keep to one side.

7 Smash the feta with a fork and mix in the yoghurt, honey and chilli.

8 Warm the beetroot over a medium heat.

9 Place a pool of feta in the middle of a plate, divide the beetroot on top followed by the orange segments , pumpkin seeds and fronds of dill.

10 Drizzle the orange vinaigrette around the edge and serve.

Serves four

Russian salad.

8 medium Rooster potatoes, peeled and quartered
40g peas, fresh or frozen, blanched
2 carrots peeled, cut into small cubes
2 sticks celery, cut into small cubes
3 gherkins, cut into small cubes
3 scallions, chopped
4 hard boiled eggs, chopped
300g mayonnaise
1tbsp Dijon mustard
2tbsp apple cider vinegar
Salt and ground white pepper
Handful of fresh dill, chopped

Boil the potatoes in a large saucepan until cooked but still firm. This should take about 10 minutes. Drain and allow to cool completely.

2 Add all the other prepared vegetables to a large mixing bowl with the hard boiled eggs.

3 Once they are cool, cut the potatoes into thumb size chunks and put in the mixing bowl also.

4 Now add the mayo, mustard and vinegar and mix together. Season with a generous pinch of white pepper and sea salt and garnish with the dill.


Paul Flynn and his roast chicken and ribollita salad with rosemary aioli. Photograph: Harry Weir
Paul Flynn and his roast chicken and ribollita salad with rosemary aioli. Photograph: Harry Weir

This dish marries three of my favourite things – a perfect Italian ribollita, some cold roast chicken and a lovely aioli. The Italians never waste anything, always making something wonderful out of leftovers. In this case it’s bread, roasted and added to a hearty soup full of vegetables, beans and love.

Here, I’m making it more dry and serving it cold – a crime, no doubt, in Tuscany. The bread’s job is to absorb all the smoky juices from the pot, making for a dish that is subtle and sustaining at the same time.

To make life easy, I’m using an already roasted chicken. Cook one if you like, of course, or simply use the leftovers of a roast chicken dinner.

I love aioli, and I always have one or two flavoured ones ready in the Tannery, for whatever eventuality. I’m sneaking some salted anchovies (the dark ones) into this; it’s optional but highly recommended. Ortiz anchovies are the best I’ve come across.

Paul Flynn is a chef and restaurateur, co-owner of the Tannery in Dungarvan and writes a weekly cookery column in The Irish Times

Serves six

Paul Flynn's roast chicken ribollita salad. Photograph: Harry Weir
Photograph: Harry Weir

60ml olive oil
½ a ciabatta loaf, torn into chunks
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
2 red onions, peeled and diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 sticks of celery, sliced
1pkt (125g) smoked bacon lardons
1tsp smoked paprika
1 tin (400g) chopped tomatoes
1 tin of cannellini or butterbeans , rinsed
A sprig of thyme
350ml chicken stock
A small drizzle of honey
2 strips of orange peel
A handful of kale, cavolo nero if possible, stalks removed, washed and shredded.
Salt and pepper
1 whole roast chicken, cut into chunks.
A generous amount of shaved Parmesan
A little extra olive oil for drizzling

For the aioli
50ml olive oil
2 sprigs rosemary
2 free range egg yolks
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
1tbsp Dijon mustard
4 anchovies
250ml sunflower oil
Juice of ½ a lemon
Salt and pepper

Make the aioli: Put the olive oil and rosemary together in a small pot then heat up over a low heat. Do not boil but just let it warm through and infuse for 20 minutes then cool it down. Put the egg yolks, garlic, mustard and anchovies into a blender or small food processor. Slowly start to drizzle in the sunflower oil, add the lemon juice to flavour and thin the aioli out a little. Add the cooled olive oil carefully, omitting the rosemary, season and chill until needed.

2 Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Drizzle the bread with a little of the oil and bake for 10 minutes until golden and crunchy

3 Cook the garlic in the olive oil over a gentle heat until lightly golden. Add the onions, carrots, celery and bacon to the pot, and cook over a low heat for 15 minutes until they soften.

4 Add the paprika, tinned tomatoes, beans, thyme, stock, orange and honey and bring to a simmer. Cook for 10 more minutes before adding the kale. After two more minutes remove the orange and thyme then season with salt and pepper.

5 Allow the mixture to cool then add the bread. When ready to serve, spoon the salad into a platter, place the roast chicken nicely on top then scatter over the Parmesan and drizzle with a little extra oil for good measure.

6 Serve the aioli on the side for people to dollop as they please.

Chef Gareth Mullins with his chicken satay. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times
Chef Gareth Mullins with his chicken satay. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

This satay recipe is one that I first made when I lived and worked in Australia. A chef friend of mine there, who had worked with chef and restaurateur David Thompson, the expert on all things Thai food, taught me it. I have adapted the recipe a little over the years and it really reminds me of summer in Australia, every time I cook it.

I think it’s fantastic for enjoying in the sunshine, as it’s not too heavy, and relatively easy to make. It also gives more flavour when cooked on a barbecue as the smoke really gives a more complex taste, just like on the streets of Bangkok.

I have shared this recipe along with many more on my Instagram account over the past few months. Food and recipes have really been a focus for so many people during this time and I have loved sharing my knowledge with people and seeing such great positive responses.

It’s true what they say – food helps build a community. I’ve seen it bring so much pleasure to people in recent times especially, both cooking and eating it.

Gareth Mullins is executive chef at the Marker Hotel. You can follow his recipe stories on Instagram @garmullins

Serves six

Gareth Mullins’ chicken satay skewers. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill /The Irish Times
Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill /The Irish Times

6 chicken breasts

For the paste
3 shallots, peeled
1tsp turmeric
½tsp cumin
1tsp coriander
1tsp salt
5tbsp roasted peanuts

For the marinade
250ml coconut milk
2tbsp Thai fish sauce
1tsp brown sugar
3 cloves garlic
2tbsp whiskey (optional)
3tbsp soy sauce

For the sauce
250ml coconut milk
1tbsp peanut butter
2tbsp mild curry powder
1tbsp Thai fish sauce
2tbsp sweet chilli sauce

To serve
Fresh lime wedges

Blend the shallots, turmeric, cumin, coriander and salt in a blender to make a paste – you can also use a pestle and mortar for this. Add the peanuts, blend again and set this mixture aside.

2 In a large bowl, mix all of the ingredients for the marinade together, making sure they are well combined.

3 Slice the chicken breasts thinly, add to the marinade and mix well until the chicken is fully coated.

4 Combine the paste with the marinade and mix well again.

5 Cover the bowl in cling film and put into the fridge for two to three hours.

6 Thread the chicken pieces onto skewers and sear on a hot grill or on a barbecue.

7 Finish cooking the skewers in the oven until cooked through. This will take about 10-12 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius.

8 Mix any leftover marinade with the satay sauce ingredients, add to a small pan and bring to a boil.

9 Serve the satay sauce on the side with the chicken skewers and fresh lime wedges.

Serves four

Greek chicken pie.

200g spinach
150g feta cheese, crumbled
2 eggs, whisked
1tbsp dried or fresh dill
Black pepper
100g butter
250g filo pastry
200g leftover roast chicken, sliced
1tsp sesame seeds for scattering on top

Preheat an oven to 180 degrees Celsius, or equivalent.

2 Place the spinach in a pan with a few tablespoons of boiling water. Cook over a high heat till wilted and cooked. Drain in a sieve over the sink, removing as much moisture as possible.

3 Roughly chop the cooled spinach and place in a bowl along with the crumbled feta, whisked egg, dill and season with plenty black pepper. Mix well till combined.

4 Brush a 25cm (10in) by 20cm (8in) pie dish with some melted butter and lay one sheet of filo pastry on the bottom. Brush this with butter and repeat the process again with five more sheets. Spread half the spinach mix on the base. Top with the sliced chicken then dot the remaining spinach mix over. Top this with a few layers of buttered pastry.

5 Fold over the overhanging pastry sides and crimp it all together. Score the top of the pie using a sharp knife. Brush with any remaining butter and scatter with sesame seeds.

6 Bake for 30 minutes, till golden. Leave to cool for 10-15 minutes before cutting into squares. Serve with a green salad.

Serves four

Sri Lankan coconut crusted chicken.

6 chicken breasts, halved lengthways
100ml buttermilk
2tsp chilli powder
1tsp ground ginger
2tsp ground coriander
2tsp curry powder
200g rice flour
3 eggs beaten
200g desiccated coconut
100g ground almonds
Salt and pepper
2 red chillies, deseeded
2 cloves garlic
1 thumb- sized piece of ginger
1 bunch fresh coriander
2tbsp tamarind paste
2tbsp soy sauce
2tbsp toasted sesame oil
100ml coconut milk
150ml vegetable oil for frying

To make the chicken brine, put the buttermilk, chilli powder, ginger, coriander and curry powder in a deep dish or plastic container and whisk until everything is evenly incorporated.

2 Add the chicken to the brine mixture and marinate for at least two hours – the longer the better, overnight in the fridge is best.

3 Set up three bowls – filling one with the rice flour, one for eggs and the last for desiccated coconut. Add the ground almonds to the desiccated coconut and season with salt and pepper.

4 Carefully remove the chicken from the brine and pat dry. Dredge the chicken, one piece at a time, first in the flour, then the egg and finally the coconut crumb.

5 Place onto a plate until ready for frying.

6 Make the sauce by placing the chillies, garlic, ginger, coriander, tamarind, soy, sesame oil and coconut milk into a blender. Blitz on high until the sauce is smooth. Set aside.

7 Put the vegetable oil in a deep frying pan and heat on high for five minutes until the oil is hot enough for frying.

8 Shallow fry two chicken breasts at a time. Fry on either side for three to five minutes, carefully turning using tongs. Remove from the oil when the coating has turned golden brown and the chicken is cooked through. Place on a plate lined with kitchen paper.

9 Once all the chicken is cooked, garnish with more desiccated coconut and toasted sesame seeds and serve immediately with the Sri Lankan sauce.

Serves four

Chicken larb with grilled cabbage and lime.

3 chicken fillets (mince them in a mincer or food processor, or use turkey mince)
2-3tbsp fish sauce
Pinch of sugar
Thinly sliced red onion, cut in rounds
Small bunch of coriander, chopped
2 limes, one zested and juiced, one sliced into wedges, for serving
1 red chilli, finely chopped
Small bunch spring onions, thinly sliced
Salt and white pepper
1 cabbage, cut into eight wedges

Place the chicken in a small saucepan, cover with water and poach it until cooked through.

2 Drain the chicken, and mix the fish sauce and sugar into it.

3 Add the red onions, spring onions, coriander, lime juice and zest, chilli, salt and pepper.

4 Heat a griddle pan. Dress the cabbage in olive oil, salt and pepper and grill for two to three minutes on each side. Place it on a tray and put it into an oven heated to 180 degree Celsius, or equivalent, until the stems are tender. Put the extra lime on the griddle pan for a few minutes each side too.

5 Serve the larb in a bowl with the cabbage on a separate plate and garnished with a little more chopped coriander and the griddled limes.


Guy Sinnott with his marinated flank steak. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times
Guy Sinnott with his marinated flank steak. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Summer dining for me, is all about communality. I enjoy eating outside, drinking cold beer sharing food served family-style, and look forward to being able to do that again. My favourite thing to cook for groups at my house is tacos. I make seared or slow cooked meats, spicy salsas and roasted vegetables and everyone digs in and makes their own.

One bite of these marinated flank steak tacos and your mind will be transported to a taqueria in Southern California. I like to use flank because it is very economical so is perfect for feeding a crowd. When cooked to medium, or rare, and sliced against the grain, it stands up to rib-eye, porterhouse or any of the premium steaks.

Guy Sinnott is a music publicist. You can follow his recipe stories on Instagram @guysinnott

Serves four to six

Guy Sinnott’s marinated flank steak. Photograph: Alan Betson/ The Irish Times
Photograph: Alan Betson/ The Irish Times

800g flank steak (cut into three or four pieces)
140ml olive oil
120ml soy sauce
Juice of 6 limes
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 medium red chilli, finely chopped
1 small bunch thyme
1tbsp brown sugar
1tbsp black pepper
1tbsp ground cumin
1tsp chilli powder
1tsp cayenne pepper
1 red onion, sliced
1 red pepper, sliced
1 yellow pepper, sliced
14-18 corn or flour tortillas

To serve
A selection of avocado slices, sour cream, pico de gallo, hot sauce, limes, coriander, radishes

Combine the olive oil, soy sauce, lime juice, garlic, chilli, thyme, brown sugar, black pepper, cumin, chilli powder and cayenne in a large bowl and stir to combine. Transfer 80ml of the marinade to a separate bowl and set aside. Add the flank steak (ensuring all the meat is submerged in the marinade) and cover with foil or clingfilm. Refrigerate for a minimum of three hours and up to overnight.

2 One hour before you’re ready to cook the steak, toss the onion and peppers in the reserved 80ml of marinade and reserve.

3 Heat a griddle, cast iron pan or barbecue until it begins to smoke. Remove the steaks from the marinade, shake off excess and cook for three minutes per side for medium rare. Remove steaks to a plate or board, cover with foil and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

4 Add the onion and peppers to the pan, and cook until softened. If using a barbecue, cook these on a pan on the grates.

5 Transfer the vegetables to a warm bowl or serving platter. Thinly slice the flank steak across the grain, pouring any of the resting juices over the steak.

6 Serve immediately with warm tortillas, sliced avocado, sour cream, pico de gallo, hot sauce, coriander and any other condiments you desire.

Serves six

300g round steak beef mince
300g lean pork mince
1 egg, whisked
1 onion, very finely chopped
90g porridge oats (or breadcrumbs)
1-2tbsp olive oil
15g fresh dill, leaves chopped
10g fresh parsley, leaves chopped (reserve some for garnish)
1 tsp nutmeg
850ml chicken or beef stock
2 tbsp crème fraîche
300g curly kale, stems removed
Dash of lemon juice
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper

In the same non-stick frying pan you will use to fry the meatballs, firstly heat some olive oil and gently sweat the onion for five minutes over a low heat until slightly softened and translucent (do not allow to burn). Set aside to cool.

2 In a bowl, mix the ground beef and pork together, then add the egg, cooled cooked onion, oats, nutmeg, dill and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.

3 Form into meatballs (makes about 30-35).

4 Heat some more olive oil in the non-stick frying pan and gently brown the outside of the meatballs. Do this in two batches to avoid overcrowding the pan.

5 Return all the meatballs to the pan, add the stock and simmer for 15 minutes to allow the liquid to reduce and the meatballs to be fully cooked through, stirring occasionally. Lastly, stir in the crème fraîche. Check the seasoning.

6 Blanch the kale in a saucepan of boiling salted water, then drain and drizzle it with some oil and lemon juice. Season.

7 Serve the meatballs hot, garnished with additional parsley, with the kale and rice, mashed potato or even gnocchi.

Serves six

Wasabi beef salad. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times
Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

400g sirloin of beef
2tsp wasabi paste
2tsp miso paste
Few splashes soy sauce or tamari
400g mange tout
1 bunch spring onions, chopped
200g oyster mushrooms
Few leaves basil, torn
Knob peeled, grated ginger
1 clove garlic, crushed
25g sesame seeds
Olive oil
Splash water

Take your steaks out of the fridge about an hour before you want to cook them, so they come up to room temperature.

2 Heat a frying pan. Lightly oil the steaks and when the pan is smoking, sear the sirloin on one side, brushing generously with the wasabi and miso. I did this with the back of a spoon and smeared it on rather than brushed it on. Turn it over to cook on the other side, adding a few splashes of soy or tamari to colour the steak. Add some sesame seeds (they will hop around the place, so beware).

3 Cook for about two minutes and keep turning to get colour on both sides of the meat.

4 Remove the steak from the pan and set it aside (you want it pink in the middle), and it will continue to cook off the pan.

5 Add a little more oil to the pan and sauté the mushrooms first, to help sop up those juices. If the pan has got too dry, or the mushrooms aren’t producing enough liquid to de-glaze the pan, add a few splashes of water to stop it burning.

6 When things start to sizzle again, add the spring onions, ginger, garlic, basil and mange tout. Cook on a high heat for about three minutes.

7 To serve, slice the beef finely, place the vegetables on a platter and scatter the beef (and more sesame seeds) over the top.

Serves six

Spiced beef lettuce cups with cherry pepper aioli.

450g beef mince
Drizzle of olive oil
1 clove of garlic, crushed
¼ of a red pepper, finely diced
¼ of a green pepper, finely diced
8 jalapeño chillies, diced
8 cherry peppers (from a jar, if available), diced
Salt and white pepper
1 red chilli, finely diced
3tbsp Worcestershire sauce
4tbsp sriracha sauce
3tbsp barbecue sauce
100g chopped tomatoes
4 scallions, finely sliced on the bias
18 leaves of coriander
18 Baby Gem lettuce leaves

For the aioli
4 egg yolks
1tbsp Dijon mustard
50ml white wine vinegar
Juice of 1 lemon
6 cherry peppers (from a jar, if available)
Salt and white pepper
150ml vegetable oil
50g fresh coriander

Heat the olive oil and add the garlic. Sweat it down for a few minutes without allowing it to colour. Add the beef, season, and cook for three minutes. Remove any excess oil. Add the peppers, cherry peppers, jalapeños and red chilli. Cook until the vegetables are softened and the beef is browned.

2 Add the barbecue, sriracha, Worcestershire sauce, chopped tomatoes and bring to the boil, then simmer until reduced to desired consistency.

3 For the aioli: Add the egg yolks, seasoning and mustard to a food processor. Blend. Add the vinegar, lemon juice and cherry peppers and blend to a puree. Put on a medium to high speed, and slowly add the oil until it emulsifies. Add the fresh coriander at the end and adjust seasoning.

4 To serve: Add the scallions to the beef. Fill each lettuce cup with a spoonful of the beef, add a spoon of the cherry pepper aioli and garnish with a coriander leaf.

Fish and seafood

Aoife Barker with her Dublin Bay prawn scampi. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/ The Irish Times
Aoife Barker with her Dublin Bay prawn scampi. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/ The Irish Times

I picked this recipe as my summer sensation as it’s a perfect Irish summertime classic. I’ve great memories of holidays with fresh Irish scampi after a long day at the beach.

I have created a foolproof technique to ensure you get beautiful golden and crisp scampi. I don’t use a batter, so there is very little mess or work involved.

I’ve tried lots of different recipes and flour combinations, and this mix with medium maize meal gives the perfect light, crispy result without the heaviness of some batters. It is quick, easy and delicious.

Aoife Barker is a chef. You can follow her recipe stories on Instagram @chefaoifebarker

Serves two as a main course or four as a starter

Dublin Bay scampi. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times
Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

275g Dublin Bay prawns/langoustines (peeled weight) or 1kg whole Dublin Bay prawns/langoustines (about 20 large prawns)
100ml buttermilk
1 whole large egg
70g plain flour
70g medium maize meal (from health food stores or bigger supermarkets. You can also use semolina or panko breadcrumbs)
1 litre of oil, for frying (vegetable or rapeseed)
Salt and pepper

For the wasabi mayonnaise
4 heaped tbsp mayonnaise
1 heaped tsp wasabi paste
Juice of ¼ lime
Salt and pepper

1 If you are using whole prawns peel them and remove the vein. You can ask your fishmonger to do this for you.

2 Mix 100ml buttermilk with one large egg and whisk. Add one teaspoon salt and cracked black pepper.

3 Pour the buttermilk and egg mixture over the peeled prawns and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

4 Make your wasabi mayonnaise: Mix the mayonnaise, lime juice, wasabi paste, cracked black pepper and half teaspoon salt, and whisk by hand until combined.

5 For the coating mix the plain flour and medium maize meal, and season with one teaspoon of salt and cracked black pepper.

6 Heat the oil in a deep fat fryer or a large pot. It should reach 185 degrees Celsius.

7 Take your prawns from the egg mix and dredge in the flour mix. Press them down to ensure they are fully coated.

8 Fry the prawns in batches, approximately five or six at a time. Don’t overcrowd the pot. They will take 60 to 90 seconds to cook, depending on the size. Get them golden brown and crispy and then drain on kitchen roll.

9 Serve immediately with a lemon wedge and wasabi mayonnaise.

Chef’s tip: This recipe can be gluten-free if the plain flour is substituted with gluten free flour and the maize meal is gluten-free.

Serves six

4 fillets white fish (hake, pollock or cod)
4 Rooster potatoes, in 3cm cubes
½ yellow pepper
½ fennel bulb, finely chopped
1 onion, finely diced
2 large carrots, finely diced
1tsp fennel seeds, crushed
2tbsp olive oil
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
500ml stock
100ml wine (red or white)
2tbsp fresh parsley
4tbsp flour
Sea salt


1 Heat two tablespoons of oil in a large heavy based pan and sauté the onion till soft.

2 Add the yellow pepper, fennel and carrot. Stir well and cook for a few minutes.

3 Add the crushed fennel seed and stir. Cook for a minute, until fragrant, before adding the wine. Leave the sauce simmer and the alcohol burn off before adding the stock and chopped tomatoes. Season to taste.

4 Add the cubed potatoes. Simmer gently until the potatoes are just about cooked. Lower the heat.

5 Heat one tablespoon of oil in a wide frying pan. Dust the fish fillets in a little flour and fry for a minute or two on each side.

6 Stir the parsley gently into the fish stew then lay the lightly fried fish on top. Place the lid back on and leave it simmer for a further five minutes till the fish is cooked.

7 Ladle into bowls and top with pieces of flaked fish, fresh parsley and a wedge of lemon. Serve with crusty bread.

Serves six

Goan fish curry

1tbsp butter
1 onion, finely chopped
1tsp grated ginger
1 clove garlic, crushed
½tsp cumin
½tsp turmeric
2-3tbsp curry paste
2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
400ml tin coconut milk
500g firm white fish (hake or pollock) cut into chunks

To serve
Boiled rice
1 lime


1 Melt the butter in a heavy-based pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and sauté till quite soft. Add the ginger and garlic. Leave to cook for a minute then stir so it doesn’t stick.

2 Add the dry ground spices and the curry paste. Stir to coat everything in the spices then add the chopped tomatoes. Stir well before adding the coconut milk.

3 Lower the heat to a simmer and add the fish to the pot. Place the lid on and leave to cook for five to 10 minutes, until the fish is opaque. Serve ladled over rice with a wedge of lime.

Serves four


4tbsp olive oil
4 garlic cloves, smashed
3 bay leaves
2 onions, finely chopped
1 leek, finely sliced
1 fennel bulb, finely chopped, fronds picked and reserved
1 glug of Pernod (optional or you can use white wine)
1tsp tomato puree, heaped
4 large ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 pinch of saffron
1 red chilli
1½ litres fish stock
00g mussels or clams, or a mix
100g Dublin Bay prawns or langoustine
200g monkfish, sliced

For the rouille
100g stale bread, torn into small pieces
1 lemon, juiced
1 roasted red pepper, peeled and deseeded
1 egg yolk
1 garlic clove, minced
1tbsp smoked paprika
200ml olive oil
Salt and pepper

1 To make the rouille, put the torn bread into a food processor with the lemon juice and the red pepper. Blitz until it turns to a paste.

2 Add the egg yolk, garlic and paprika.

3 Turn the processor to a low to medium speed, let the yolk incorporate into the bread mixture. Slowly, in a steady stream, add the olive oil. The oil should emulsify with the yolk and bread mixture.

4 The rouille should have the consistency of mayonnaise. If it is still too thick or has split, stream in a little cold water. This should help bring the mix back together. Set aside until needed.

5 Heat the oil in a large saucepan and fry off the garlic, onion, leek and fennel. Cook for about 10 minutes until softened.

6 Carefully add the Pernod and then the tomato purée, chopped tomatoes, saffron, bay leaves and chilli. Simmer for a minute or two then pour in the fish stock. Let it simmer to reduce for a couple of minutes.

7 Put the seafood in all at the same time, making sure they are roughly the same size.

8 Cook for a further seven to 10 minutes until all the mussels and clams are open and the fish is cooked through.

9 Serve in warmed bowls with the fennel fronds on top, with a crusty baguette and a generous dollop of rouille


Lilly Higgins: Photograph: Aidan Crawley/The Irish Times
Lilly Higgins: vegetables cooked on a barbecue are just incredible. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/The Irish Times

Summer is one of my favourite seasons for food, mostly because I love cooking outside as it’s so sociable. Instead of being in the kitchen alone, you can be in the garden in the centre of all of the activity.

Often barbecues can be too meat focused for me and vegetables cooked on a barbecue are just incredible. This recipe is based on a Turkish one from Honey & Co in London. It does take a little time to peel the peppers once they are charred, but it’s worth it.

This is delicious alongside any barbecued meats, or on its own with labneh or yoghurt and flatbreads. I love how it makes the most of any proudly home-grown herbs.

Ideally this should be cooked on a barbecue. The vegetables can be roasted whole in the oven, but you won’t get the smokiness, so results in a different, but still tasty salad.

Lilly Higgins is a food writer

Serves four

Turkish chargrilled vegetable salad.
Turkish chargrilled vegetable salad.

3 red onions
2 aubergines
2 red peppers
2 courgettes, cut into long strips
1 large clove garlic, crushed
2tbsp lemon juice
2tbsp apple cider vinegar
2tbsp olive oil
2tbsp parsley, chopped
2tbsp mint, chopped
2tbsp coriander, chopped
Seeds from ½ a pomegranate
Sea salt, to taste

Whisk the olive oil, lemon juice and garlic together in a large bowl.

2 Light your barbecue and once it comes to heat add the whole aubergines, onions and peppers. Lay the courgette strips on the grill dry. Turn once. Keep an eye on the courgette as they will only take 10 minutes, then set them aside.

3 The peppers will be done next. place them in a bowl and cover it with cling film so the skin will be easier to peel off. You want the outside of the vegetables to be blistered and black, so don’t worry if it looks burnt. The aubergines will blacken and collapse once cooked. Everything will take about 30 minutes to cook.

4 Once everything is cool enough to handle, peel the red onions and roughly chop them. Cut the courgette into bite-size pieces, peel the peppers and cut into strips. Cut the aubergine in half and remove the inside with a spoon, and chop it roughly. Keep all the cooking juices that escape.

5 Place all of the chopped vegetables and the herbs into the large bowl with the dressing and fold gently to combine. Top with the pomegranate seeds. Season to taste with salt and serve at room temperature.

Serves four

Potato, Parmesan, mozzarella and red pepper cake. Photograph: Harry Weir.
Photograph: Harry Weir.

2 red peppers, deseeded and cut into 1cm chunks
3tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
1 sprig rosemary, finely chopped
1tsp smoked paprika
850g potatoes, peeled, boiled and drained
100g butter
150ml milk
Salt and pepper
Pinch of nutmeg
150g freshly grated Parmesan
4 eggs
1 mozzarella ball, sliced

For the base and the top
40g butter
4tbsp white breadcrumbs

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius.

2 Cook the red peppers gently with the olive oil, garlic, rosemary and smoked paprika. Allow them to become soft and jammy. This will take about 15 minutes over a low heat. Season and set aside.

3 While they are still warm, mash the potatoes with the butter and milk, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Allow to cool a little. Beat the eggs and add to the potatoes, along with the Parmesan.

4 Butter a 20cm spring-form cake tin and sprinkle in some of the breadcrumbs. Spoon over half the potato mixture into the tin.

5 Layer the red peppers on top, followed by the mozzarella, then spoon the remaining potatoes on top of the peppers.

6 Smooth over the potatoes with the back of a spoon.

7 Sprinkle the remaining breadcrumbs on top and dot with the butter.

8 Bake for 30 minutes, until golden and crisp. Allow to stand for 10 minutes before unclipping the tin.

Serves four

Pink peppercorn baked feta.

Olive oil
1 bulb fennel
1 large beetroot, cooked and peeled
1tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 block feta
1tsp pink peppercorns
1 lemon
2tbsp pecan nuts, toasted

To serve
Crusty bread
A green salad

Preheat your the oven to 200 degrees Celsius.

2 Halve and slice the fennel bulb, set aside any green fronds that were on the top. Place the fennel on a small tray and drizzle over one tablespoon of olive oil. Season with a little salt and roast in the oven for 10 minutes.

3 Dice the cooked beetroot and dry it with kitchen paper. Coat the beetroot in the balsamic vinegar. Add the beetroot cubes to the fennel. Peel the skin from the lemon into long strips using a peeler, avoid the pith. Place the lemon peel over the fennel. Make a little space in the centre of the tray for the feta.

4 Place the block of feta on the tray and scatter the pink peppercorns over the top along with a little olive oil.

5 Return the tray to the oven for a further 10 minutes. Once ready the cheese should be soft and the fennel starting to caramelise at the edges. Scatter the tray with the reserved fennel fronds and the toasted pecan nuts. Serve immediately with the bread and salad. The cheese begins to solidify once more as it cools so this is best enjoyed straight from the oven.

Serves six

Baked sweet potatoes with black beans and cashew sour cream.

6 medium to large sweet potatoes

For the refried black beans
1tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 red onion, finely diced
½ red chilli, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
½tsp chilli powder
½tsp ground cumin
1 400g tin black beans
120ml water
90g sweet corn kernels
Juice of half a lime
Sea salt to season

For the cashew sour cream
150g cashew nuts, soaked in hot water for an hour
120ml water
½tsp apple cider vinegar
½tsp extra virgin olive oil
1tbsp lemon juice
Pinch of sea salt

For the spinach salsa
1 large handful spinach leaves, finely sliced
2 tomatoes, diced
3 spring onions, finely chopped
1/3 cucumber, diced
Juice of a lime
Small handful of coriander leaves

For the avocado
2 ripe avocados, peeled and sliced
Juice of half a lime
Sea salt and black pepper to season

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius. Wash the sweet potatoes, but don’t peel them. Pierce them with a fork in a couple of places. Place them on a baking sheet and put them in the oven for about 45 minutes, until they are soft right the way through to the middle.

2 To make the refried beans, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan over a low heat. Add the onion and cook for five minutes. Add the chilli and garlic, and cook for a further two minutes. Add the chilli powder and cumin, and continue to cook for another two minutes. Increase the heat to a medium heat. Add half the beans along with 60ml of water and a pinch of sea salt. Using a potato masher roughly mash the beans. Cook for about three minutes, until the water has evaporated.

3 Add the remaining beans along with another 60ml of water and a pinch of salt and do the same; roughly mash the beans and cook for about three minutes until the water has evaporated again. Remove from the heat and stir in the sweet corn kernels and lime juice. Spoon into a serving bowl and set to one side. The beans can be served either hot or cold.

4 To make the sour cream, drain the soaked cashew nuts and add them to a blender along with the rest of the sour cream ingredients. Blend until creamy. Spoon into a serving bowl.

5 To make the salsa, simply place all the salsa ingredients in a bowl and toss well.

6 To prepare the avocado, arrange the avocado slices on a plate and dress with a drizzle of olive oil, the juice of half a lime, a pinch of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

7 To serve, cut the baked sweet potatoes length ways, but don’t split them. Place on a large serving plate and sprinkle chopped coriander over them. Serve the fillings in separate bowls to allow diners to help themselves.


Pastry chef Shane Smith with his summer berry baked Alaska terrine.
Pastry chef Shane Smith with his summer berry baked Alaska terrine.

It really doesn’t get anymore retro than the classic baked Alaska. Resonant of a far away place, it is a winning combination of some of my favourite ingredients, sponge, creamy ice-cream and meringue. My version turns this snowy peaked classic into a terrine.

You can create your own signature baked Alaska by changing the sponge and ice-cream flavours. Peanut butter and jam, mocha, lemon meringue, banoffee, the possibilities are endless.

It is also the perfect dessert to make ahead of time, simply finish by whisking up the meringue to cover the ice-cream, and if you have a blowtorch you can finish it at the table for added drama.

Serving this dessert will transport all your dining companions right back to another time and place.

Shane Smith is a pastry chef

Serves eight

Summer berry baked Alaska terrine.

For the sponge
2 medium eggs, whites and yolks separated
50g caster sugar
50g self raising flour
Pinch of salt
Drop of vanilla extract
Zest of ½ a lemon

For the sauce
300g fresh raspberries
2tbsp caster sugar
Juice of ½ a lemon

For the raspberry ripple parfait
4 medium egg yolks
Drop of vanilla extract
100g caster sugar
350ml single cream, whipped

For the meringue
3 medium egg whites
110g caster sugar
Drop of vanilla extract

To serve
Summer berries

For the sponge: In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites until frothy. Add the sugar gradually and mix until thick and glossy. To this add the yolks, vanilla and lemon zest, mix again. Fold in the flour.

2 Spoon this into a lined rectangular baking tray (23cm x 30cm) and bake in a preheated oven set at 200 degrees Celsius (180 degrees fan) and bake for eight minutes, or until golden brown.

3 Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Once cold, using the base of a 2lb loaf tin as a guide, cut the sponge into three strips.

4 For the raspberry coulis: Place the berries, sugar and lemon juice in a pot and cook over a medium heat until the raspberries have broken down. Strain through a sieve and keep cold until needed

5 For the parfait: Place the yolks, sugar and vanilla in a heat proof bowl over a pot of gently simmering water (the bowl should not be touching the water) and with an electric hand mixer, whisk this for five minutes until the yolks are thick and pale in colour. Set aside to cool.

6 To the cooled yolks, fold in the whipped cream. Add the raspberry coulis and run a knife through it to add a ripple effect, but do not over mix.

7 To assemble: Line a 2lb loaf tin with clingfilm, allowing extra to hang over the edges. Place a sheet of sponge into the tin, spoon in half the parfait mix, place another sponge on top and spoon in the remaining raspberry ripple mix. Place the last sheet of sponge on top. Cover with clingfilm and place in a freezer overnight.

8 For the meringue: In a clean dry bowl add the room temperature egg whites. Whisk until doubled in size and frothy. Gradually start adding the caster sugar and mix until you are left with a thick, glossy meringue. Add the vanilla and mix it through.

9 To serve: Remove the terrine from the freezer, take it out of the tin and place on your serving dish. Spoon on the meringue and spread it all over to cover the terrine. Use a blow torch to caramelise the meringue, top with summer berries and serve immediately. If you don’t have a blow torch, preheat your oven to 220 degrees Celsius and place the terrine inside for a few seconds to brown the edges.

Tip: Place your serving dish in the freezer for an hour before you assemble. This will help slow down the terrine melting.

Serves six


200ml water
200g sugar
Juice of 2 lemons
50ml strawberry Bols (optional)
50ml crème de cassis (optional)
30 ripe strawberries, stems removed
1lt whipping cream
200g mascarpone cheese
2tbsp icing sugar
2 vanilla pods, seeds scraped out
20 sponge fingers

Place the water, sugar and lemon juice in a pot and bring to the boil. Boil for five minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the strawberry Bols and crème de cassis (if you’re serving this to children, add the liqueurs at the beginning to cook off the alcohol content, or omit them).

2 Add the mascarpone, cream, vanilla and icing sugar to a mixing bowl and whip until it is stiff.

3 Dip the sponge fingers one by one into the flavoured syrup and line the base of a deep casserole or pie dish, approximately 30cm x 15cm (12in x 6in). Dip them for no longer than one second each side – any longer and the end product will become too soggy.

4 Use half of the sponge fingers on the base layer. Now pipe a single even layer of cream over them. Make another even layer of approximately 15 halved strawberries. Repeat the sponge layer, followed by a very thin layer of cream. Pipe a cream rosette border, leaving the centre open, as pictured. Fill the gap with the remaining strawberries.

5 Leave for at least one hour before serving to allow the syrup to soak into the sponge.

Serves six

Peach Melba semifreddo

250g raspberries
30g caster sugar
½tsp rose water
1 large peach or nectarine
Juice of ½ lemon
30g caster sugar
1 pinch saffron threads
400ml cream
150g caster sugar
2 eggs and 1 egg yolk
1tsp vanilla extract

I use a stainless steel mixer bowl to make this, first filling the bowl with boiling water and placing the whisk attachment into the water. Leave it to heat up somewhere safe, out of reach of children.

2 Blitz the raspberries, sugar and rose water until smooth, with a stick blender or in a Nutribullet. Pour the puree through a sieve and discard the seeds. Set this coulis aside.

3 Halve the peach and remove the stone. I leave the skin on, especially if it’s organic. Blitz the peach with the lemon juice, sugar and saffron threads until completely smooth. Set aside.

4 Once the stainless steel bowl is warm, dry it well and whisk the eggs, yolk and sugar until pale, frothy and voluminous. Set aside to cool.

5 Whip the cream and vanilla extract until soft peaks form, then gently fold the cream into the egg mousse. Line a 2lb (1kg) loaf tin with clingfilm. Dot a few tablespoons of the two fruit purees into the tin, then top with some of the cream mousse. Swirl a little, then repeat, alternating the layers between fruit and cream. Once the tin is full, tap it on the counter firmly to remove any air bubbles, then cover well and freeze overnight or for eight hours, until set.

6 Remove from the freezer for 10 minutes before dividing into thick slices. Serve with more raspberries or sandwich between wafers.

Serves six

Salted caramel eclairs. Photograph: Harry Weir
Photograph: Harry Weir

For the choux pastry
150ml water
¼tsp caster sugar
50g butter, cubed
Pinch salt
65g strong white flour, sieved
2 small eggs, beaten

For the salted caramel
397g tin sweetened condensed milk
75g caster sugar
100g butter
1tbsp Golden Syrup
Generous pinch sea salt
125ml whipped cream

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius, or equivalent, and line a greased baking sheet with parchment paper.

2 For the choux pastry: Heat the water, sugar, butter and salt in a medium-sized heavy-based saucepan. Increase the heat and as soon as it boils, remove the pan from the heat and quickly add all the flour, stirring vigorously with a wooden spoon. Return to a low heat and keep stirring for one minute to slightly cook the flour (and to remove any excess moisture). The mixture will come together as a ball and pull away from the pan sides.

3 Allow the mixture to cool to tepid before adding the eggs. Beat in each egg gradually, before adding the next egg, until you reach a smooth, shiny paste with a dropping consistency (this will take five minutes vigorous hand-beating).

4 Spoon the paste into a piping bag fitted with a 1.5cm-wide nozzle and pipe 10cm lengths on the parchment paper. Bake the piped choux in the preheated oven at 200 degrees, or equivalent, for 25 minutes until puffed up and browned (do not open the oven door during this time). Lastly, to crisp them up, remove the eclairs from the oven, prick the bases twice with a skewer to release steam and bake for two further minutes. Allow them to cool on a wire rack.

5 To make the salted caramel: Gently melt the condensed milk, sugar, butter and Golden Syrup in a medium saucepan. Over a medium heat, stir continuously for 20 minutes until the sauce deepens to a caramel colour (occasionally reduce the heat and use a wooden spoon to scrape around the inside edges of the pan where the mixture might catch and burn). Cool, then add sea salt to taste.

6 Make a light caramel cream filling by whisking a quarter of the cooled caramel with a quarter of the whipped cream.

7 Slice open and fill the base with whisked caramel cream, followed by a layer of whipped cream. Spread caramel over the upper lids and place on top. Serve immediately.

Irish Times
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