The ‘perfect’ avocado comes to Ireland

How to always have the perfect avocado on hand, brunch and jewellery, and the best cheesy recipes

Frozen fruit

Imagine never having to play avocado roulette again and having them unblemished, ripe and (almost) ready to eat whenever required. Sam Dennigan’s Strong Roots frozen vegetable range has just scored what may be its biggest coup – Hass avocados, frozen at source in Peru, sold in bags of six large halves, peeled and pitted (RRP €3.99). They can be used frozen in smoothies or defrosted in two hours. Every one is in perfect condition and ready to eat. For stockists, see strongroots.ie.

Blingin’ brunch

Brunch with added bling comes to The Cake Cafe in Dublin’s Pleasants Place on Sunday, March 26th, when you can combine eating and drinking with a jewellery workshop. Brunch platters and prosecco will be served in the courtyard before Carve Workshop show participants how to design and sculpt a ring in jewellers’ wax. At the end of the workshop you can have your creation cast in sterling silver (or white, yellow or rose gold plated) and professionally finished and returned to you.

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The process takes three weeks and the cost is €35 for the brunch and workshop, plus an additional €50 for the silver ring, and another €15 if you want to have it plated. The event runs from noon to 3pm, and places must be booked in advance at carveworkshops.com.

Cheese please

Sharing your favourite original recipe using cheese as a main ingredient could win you a cooking holiday in Tuscany for two people. The National Dairy Council is looking for recipes from both amateur cooks and trainee chefs/culinary students for a competition in support of an EU cheese campaign – Cheese Up Your Life.

Amateur cooks are invited to submit a family-style recipe for a midweek meal using any European cheese (and there are so many wonderful Irish ones available it would be a shame not to give them a look in), while the trainees/students are asked to provide a recipe for a dinner party or celebratory occasion.

In both cases, the full recipe, with details of ingredients, method, cooking times and a photograph, should be submitted to cheesecomp@ndc.ie before Tuesday, April 18th.

Six finalists, three from each category, will be invited to a cook-off at Cooks Academy in Dublin on May 5th. In addition to the cooking holidays in Tuscany (with flights), the amateur winner will receive kitchen equipment to the value of €500 and the student chef will be invited to a cheese symposium in Brussels on June 7th and 8th.