The ingredient series: meet the makers
Neff are celebrating the quality and confidence of Irish local food producers – here we meet some of the country's best
Sarah Kiely works hard to make sure that every chicken used in Sadie’s Kitchen comes from a free range Irish farm.
Sarah Kiely of Sadie's Kitchen
When we think of the foods that comfort us most, it is often the taste of soups and stews from our mother’s, or grandmother’s, kitchen that spring to mind. Sarah Kiely, founder of Sadie’s Kitchen, said one of the best compliments her customers give her is that her bone broths, Ireland and Europe’s first bone broth brand for retail, reminds them of the taste from their own grandmother’s kitchen.
I discovered bone broth because I suffered really badly with my own digestive issues
Sadie’s Kitchen is a range of tasty, nutritious natural bone broths made with fresh, quality ingredients like free-range Irish chicken, fresh vegetables and herbs. They are salt, sugar, preservative and gluten free, and can be used instead of stock, as a hot drink, or in dishes like risottos, stews and sauces.
“I discovered bone broth because I suffered really badly with my own digestive issues and found it had a dramatic effect on my digestive health. The broth ingredients are simmered out for hours to extract the maximum nutrition from the bones. I find that the gelatin and collagen really helps digestion.”
In June 2015 Kiely was made redundant from her job in PR and marketing. “It was kind of a lightbulb moment for me. I decided I was going to try and share this broth product I had been enjoying at home.”
From this, Sadie’s Kitchen was born and after a lot of help and hard work the product was on the shelf in retailers in June 2016, she says. They are now in over 250 retailers and a range of Sadie’s Kitchen broth pots is in Chopped stores nationwide.
Kiely works hard to make sure that every chicken used in Sadie’s Kitchen comes from a free range Irish farm. It’s important to her that all the chicken used has had access to green pastures and natural feed, free from enhancements of any kind to ensure the best quality from a delicious tasting broth.
For more, see sadieskitchen.ie
Jack Rogers of Newgrange Gold
The flavour of any great food is a reflection of the land or sea it comes from. The soil in the Boyne Valley in County Meath where Newgrange Gold premium Irish seed oils are produced is exactly what influences their unique taste.
The family farm looks across the River Boyne towards the ancient passage tomb at Newgrange
“The soil in the Boyne Valley is a very fertile, clay soil. It’s like terroir and grapes in France; the way the soil is treated will reflect in the oil. The soil here gives a slightly lighter taste than other regions, it’s not as strong. Different regions throughout the country would produce very distinct flavours in their oil,” says Jack Rogers, managing director of Newgrange Gold.
The company was founded in 2010 by Jack’s father, John, to add value to the rapeseed oil crop from his farm in Meath. The family farm looks across the River Boyne towards the ancient passage tomb at Newgrange. In 2012 Jack took over running the business and the company now employs five people.
“My father, who’d lived some of his childhood in Navan, always held Newgrange dear to him. He has a fascination with history and that Neolithic period. That monument is why we are here.”
John bought a small oilseed press in 2011 and built the pressing operation to cold press their rapeseed crop. All Newgrange Gold Oils are cold pressed and filtered so the oils maintain many of their natural health benefits.
The first bottle of oil was produced in 2011 and they have since expanded their range to include infused oils and their Camelina “wild flax” oil which is packed with health benefits. “It’s from the same family as rapeseed and has about three to four times more Omega 3 than rapeseed oil.”
Newgrange Gold’s range includes plain, smokey and chilli and garlic flavoured rapeseed oils and camelina oil are listed by Tesco, Dunnes Stores and SuperValu and independent stores.
For more, see newgrangegold.ie
Tom O’Hanlon of O'Hanlon Herbs
Thirty years ago coriander was considered a rarity in Ireland. Now it is the most popular herb that O’Hanlon Herbs produce.
“When we started doing coriander it was like an exotic and now it’s by far the most popular herb, which shows the journey of the Irish palette,” said Dublin native Tom O’Hanlon.
People are shopping for herbs for an experience, to embellish a meal
He started his herb company, O’Hanlon Herbs, as a hobby in his back garden in 1988. As the company celebrates its 30th anniversary, it has now grown to employ 70 people and have a range of 10 cut herbs and six potted herbs. Based in Glenealy, Co Wicklow, they supply all the national retailers with potted herbs and many with cut herbs.
His business journey began as a teenager with a summer job in a local nursery, which he loved. Coupled with this was inspiration from his next door neighbour who was growing her own herbs. “She was so enthusiastic that I thought there must be a market out there.”
One of the many milestones for the business was to move to all year round production. “We used to be seasonal with the pots but made a leap of faith in 2008 and moved from tunnels to a much more sophisticated glasshouse. Everything is more uniform and consistent,” he said.
Consumers who shop for herbs are usually looking to make a meal extra special, and O’Hanlon says that he is very aware of the importance of consistency for their customers.
“People are shopping for herbs for an experience, to embellish a meal. Our ethos is to keep a really high quality and consistency with every product we produce.” They will launch a limited edition special range of herbs at Bloom this year to mark their anniversary.
The range includes Greek, Thai, Purple and Lemon basil and Strawberry mint and Chocolate mint.
For more, see ohanlonherbs.ie
Neff and the importance of Irish food producers
As a brand, Neff is deeply passionate about quality food and the inclusive nature of cooking as a whole.
Ingredients are incredibly important and, furthermore, what’s so interesting is the story of where the produce comes from, how it is grown or produced and why someone chose to do it in the first place.
Neff is privileged to have so many outstanding food producers in Ireland and even more fortunate to get to work closely with their ingredients on a daily basis in its Dublin showroom.
Neff is partnering with seven Irish food producers from various food categories and their chefs cook with their own ingredients at Neff’s weekly cookery demonstrations. All of the producers are incredibly passionate about quality food.
There is such a strong foodie community in Ireland and, perhaps because of the size of the country, quality food is also so accessible. It’s the people and the story behind the food that makes the food so special.
Neff cooking appliances are designed by cooks for cooks. We strive to understand what our consumers want and incorporate that into the design process. The products are engineered to make the most of your culinary creations. Neff do this by building simple-to-use, innovative products, with additions such as added steam or microwave in our new ovens.
On top of this, Neff ovens come with CircoTherm, which is a fan design that delivers faster cooking capabilities. Neff also offers the unique Slide & Hide door that is the only one of its kind.
Most importantly, Neff aims to be a brand that enhances the consumers’ everyday cooking experience at home, one that is shared with family and friends.
For more, see neff-home.com/ie/
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