Saturday, 8.10am

    CountryWide Saturday 25 October 2014



    People, events and happenings around the country, presented by Damien O'Reilly.


    Seamus O'Hara runs the Carlow Brewing Company based in Bagenalstown, and he came in tell us more after Damien seeing how sucessful their craft beers are. The future seems to be local craft beers and O'Hara's beers and ales are one of the pioneering companies in Ireland

    Address: Muine Bheag Business Park, Royal Oak Road, Bagenalstown, Co. Carlow.
    Tel: (059) 972 0509


    Euro-Toques is the association of professional chefs in Europe .. and Louise Denvir climbed to the roof top of the Marker Hotel in Dublin's Docklands to check out the Euro-Toques Young Chef of the Year and the 5 young chefs in this years final( in association with Failte Ireland, and sponsored by La Rousse Foods). They were set a gruelling ( or is it grilling) task to work as a team to make a full meal from a surprise list of (almost all) Irish ingredients they were given by Paul Kelly (Executive Pastry Chef at The Merrion and judge on Great Irish Bake Off) and Gareth Mullins (Executive Chef at The Marker). This reflects the theme of this year's competition which is 'No Chef is an Island'.
    Well-known Euro-Toques Ireland members include Paul Flynn, Martin Shanahan, Darina Allen, Rachel Allen, Kevin Thornton, Ross Lewis and Derry Clarke

    Twitter: @EurotoquesIrl #youngchef2014

    Here are the recipes:



    1kg purple beetroot

    500g golden beetroot

    500g candied beetroot

    150ml red wine vinegar 

    600ml rice wine vinegar

    15g caster sugar

    30g sea salt

    20g orange zest

    10ml Llewellyn's apple balsamic

    Rapeseed oil

    200g Kalamansi purée

    2 leaves gelatine

    Handful of hazelnuts

    100g goats cheese


    For the Smoked beetroot purée: Rinse the purple beetroots with cold water and add to a large pot. Just cover with water add a pinch of salt, sugar, and a splash of red wine vinegar. Bring to a boil then let simmer until the beetroots are well cooked, a knife should glide through with no resistance. Take off heat and leave to cool naturally. Once cooled peel beetroots and reserve around 100ml of cooking liquor. Blend all ingredients thoroughly in a jug blender and finish with smoked oil and salt to taste.

    For the Pickled Beetroot: Rinse the golden beetroots with cold water and add to a large pot. Just cover with water add a pinch of salt, sugar, and a splash of red wine vinegar. Bring to a boil then let simmer until the beetroots are well cooked, a knife should glide through with no resistance. Take off heat and leave to cool naturally. Once cooled peel beetroots in a separate pot add 600ml rice wine vinegar, 15g caster sugar, 30g sea salt, 20g orange peel. Bring ingredients to boil.   Add the beetroots to the pickling liquid once it has come to a boil and take off heat. Leave to cool let beetroots pickle for an hour before serving

    For the Baby Beetroots: Rinse candied beetroots with cold water and add to a large pot. Just cover with water add a pinch of salt, sugar, and a splash of red wine vinegar. Bring to a boil then let simmer until the beetroots are well cooked, a knife should glide through with no resistance. Take off heat and leave to cool naturally. Once cooled peel beetroots. Dress with Orange Balsamic Dressing before serving.

    For the Orange Balsamic Dressing: Zest and Juice 1 Orange making sure no seeds fall into your bowl. Add 10ml of Llewellyn's Apple Balsamic and 100ml of high quality rapeseed oil. Whisk vigorously to emulsify.

    For the Kalamansi Gel : 

     Buy a good quality Kalamansi purée from your grocer along with leaf gelatine. In a small bowl bloom 2 leaves of your gelatine in cold water (about 2-3min) In a pot bring 200g of the Kalamansi purée to 30 degrees, remove gelatine from water and whisk in. Pour into a flat tray and leave in fridge to cool. It should hold a loose jelly consistency once it has set. Around 1hr.

    For the Goats cheese and Hazelnuts: 

    In a sauté pan add 50g of butter on medium heat let the butter start to foam. Add your hazelnuts and shake constantly until they have become golden brown. Strain off and season with salt. Leave to cool on kitchen paper. Once cooled crush the hazelnuts and crumble your Goats Cheese making sure to coat thoroughly.

    Sumac rubbed loin of venison, roast pumpkin, pumpkin purée and seeds, sautéed mushrooms, baby turnips and blackberry jus.



    1 medium pumpkin

    700g of venison loin


    Sumac spice

    80g of wild mushrooms (chanterelles, giroles etc.)

    8 baby turnips

    5 shallots

    1 bulb of garlic

    A sprig of thyme

    4 bay leaves 

    2 carrots

    1 ltr of chicken stock

    1tbsp of tomato purée

    One handful of blackberries

    150g of butter

    20g of treacle

    50 ml of cream

    100ml of red wine


    First take the pumpkin and divide in two, scrape out all the seeds, clean the seeds and roast lightly in a pan for 2-3 minutes. 

    Then take half the pumpkin and rub with a little butter. Wrap in tin foil and roast for 20-25 minutes until tender. Scrape the flesh from the skin and place in a blender with 40g of butter, the treacle, and the cream. Blend until smooth, pass through a sieve and set aside until serving. 

    Take the second side of the pumpkin, peel and cut into 2cm by 1cm pieces, place 20g of butter in a pan on a medium heat, once foaming add the pumpkin, brown on one side, turn over, then bake in a moderate oven until tender. Remove, and set aside until ready to serve. 

    Wash the baby turnips and blanch in a pot of boiling, salted water for about 6 minutes or until tender. Strain and chill in iced water. Take a clean towel and rub the skin from the turnips. 

    For the sauce, brown some venison trimmings with the shallots and  carrots in a pot. Add the red wine and stir all the brown bits from the bottom of the pot. Reduce the wine by 2/3s and add the tomato purée. Next add the stock, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and leave to cook for 4-5 hours or until the mix has reduced and thickened. Add the herbs and leave to infuse for half an hour. Pass, season, and set aside. 

    Finally, about half an hour before serving, combine equal quantities of the sumac and salt, and season the venison loin with this. Seal off in a hot pan and bake at 180c for 8-10 minutes. Remove, cover with foil, and leave to rest.

    Now heat your purée in a pot, heat the turnips in a pan with a little butter and stock, place your roasted pumpkin back into the oven, bring your jus back to a summer and add the blackberries. Sauté off the mushrooms in butter and season.  Once everything is hot, put the venison back in the oven for two minutes, remove and slice. 

    Place dollops of the purée on your plates and smear with a pallet knife. Place the venison on this, sprinkle the mushrooms around this, add the turnips, place the roasted pumpkin around the plate, spoon your sauce on top, and sprinkle with the pumpkin seeds. Garnish with some herbs and serve. 

    Buttermilk panna cotta, pear,parsnip

    Makes 12

    Panna Cotta


    700ml buttermilk

    560 ml milk

    200ml condensed milk

    100 gr sugar

    2 vanilla pods split and scraped

    Juice of 1 lemon

    4 1/2 leaves of gelatine soaked in cold water


    Bring the milk,condensed milk,vanilla and sugar to the boil       

    Remove from the heat and whisk in the soaked gelatine and then the buttermilk and finally the lemon juice

    Pass through a fine chinois,allow to cool a little before placing in glasses and placing in the fridge,allow 3 hours to set.

    Poached pears


    2 pears  peeled and diced

    1 litre of water

    500 gr sugar

    2 lemons sliced

    3 star anise

    1 cinnamon stick

    I vanilla pod split and scraped


    Bring everything except the pears to the boil,add the pears and poach lightly for approx 5 minutes until just cooked,remove from the heat and allow to cool in the liquid



    1 large parsnip

    12 baby parsnips

    Icing sugar

    Good squeeze of honey


    Peel the large parsnip into long slices using a peeler,deep fry the slices at 140 Celsius until golden brown,remove and place in a bowl sprinkle with a good pinch of icing sugar and toss to coat

    For the baby parsnips,cook them in a pan of water with a good Handful of sugar,when cooked through remove from the liquid and allow to cool,when cool add a knob of butter to a pan,when it starts to foam add your parsnips and a good pinch of icing sugar coat the parsnips in the butter and sugar,when lightly coloured add the honey and give everything a good toss,remove and allow to cool slightly before serving

    To serve remove the panna cotta from the fridge,take a nice tbsp of drained pears and place on top of the panna cotta,put 1 roasted parsnip on top off the pears and fially add 2/3 crisps to the glass.


    Chocolate tart orange chantilly

    Chocolate tart ingredients;

    1 shortcrust pastry base

    360 gr 63% chocolate

    400 ml cream

    120gr cold diced butter

    2 gelatine leaves soaked in cold water


    Bring the cream to the boil,add the soaked gelatine and whisk add the cream and gelatine to the choolate a third at a time until it is all mixed,finally add the diced butter and mix until everything is incorporated,pour over your party base and allow to set for half and hour before placing in the fridge for approx 2 hours before serving

    Candied orange


    1 orange thinly sliced

    500 ml water

    300gr sugar

    1 vanilla pod spit and scraped

    5 cardamom pods

    1  measure of Cointreau


    Bring everything except for the orange to the boil add the sliced orange and simer gently for 1 hour

    Allow to cool in the liquid,when cool add the Cointreau and mix



    500ml cream

    40 gr icing sugar

    1 vanilla seeds only


    Place everything in a bowl and whisk together until whipped "you want it quite stiff"

    To serve take a slice of tart and place it in the centre of the plate,lightly glaze with a blowtorch to give it a nice shine,add a little pinch of maldon on too of the tart,twist the orange to the side of the tart and finally quenelle the cream and sit it on top of the tart.




    Damien was in Paris for SIAL, Europe's biggest food fair, and took the chance to see how a couple of Irish food and drink businesses are doing in the gastronomic capital of the world. First off he talks to
    The Little Milk Company is a co-operative of Organic Dairy Farmers who are spread throughout the Irish provinces of Munster and Leinster. All of our farms are family owned and run using organic farming methods.

    The Little Milk Company
    Web :
    Tel: +353 51 347 247


    Well, all over the news this week. Minister Coveney filled Damien in on this week's talks between the producers and the meat factories, where he had the unenviable job of acting as both honest broker and the man with the cattle prod in his hand. Farmer's Journal columnist and livestock farmer John Shirley joins Damien from his farm in Carlow to give his take on the beef industry and what he thinks is going on.



    Minister Simon Coveney is off to the world's most populous country as part of a trade mission to sell Ireland and Irish food to this economic superpower. He briefs Damien on what they hope to achieve, the potential of the Chinese market and how to sell Ireland's unique food sector to the most rapidly urbanising population in the world. To give you an idea, the Dutch government have just announced that this week's four-day trade mission to China has resulted in orders for Dutch companies worth at least €500m. As incomes in China increase, the market for imported food is expected to continue to grow in the region of 17% annually. 


    Loughrea in Co Galway has a long history of agitation on behalf of tenants and the landless,so much so that the British dubbed it "Loughrea, that den of infamy" and that is the title of a new history of the land war in Galway by retired medic - Pat Finnegan. Frances Shanahan talked at length to Pat about a time in Irish history that both set the agenda for indedendence and left deep scars in the west of the country. Pat Finnegan is professor emeritus, NUI Galway, and a retired consultant physician, University Hospital, Galway. He is the author of The case of the Craughwell prisoners, during the Land War in Co. Galway, 1879–85.

    For more on Loughrea, that den of infamy see:



    Feirme is a new six-part series on TG4, based on farming. It's presented by Olympian farmer Jamie Costin.


    Blockade of Meat Plants

    We find out more about Monday's planned blockade of meat plants by farmers and later climate change and farming is the theme at the Macra na Feirme annual conference with Frances Shanahan.


    Justin Good - Forestry

    This week Justin Good won the Farm/Forestry category in the RDS Farm Forestry Awards held in Dublin. Damien joins Justin beside Belturbet in Co. Cavan.


    Zombies invade Causey Farm

    There's one farm in Ireland whose business model has grown into something really quite unusual. Louise Denvir took a trip to Causey Farm just outside Navan in Co. Meath this week, for a good scare in the night, just in time for Halloween...


    Macra na Feirme Conference

    Today is Macra na Feirme's Conference, and Suzanne Campbell joins us from Laois.

    About The Show

    Damien O'Reilly and the CountryWide team feature the events, people and happenings that bring colour and life to communities, towns and villages across the country


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    Presenter: Damien O'Reilly

    Producer: Ian Wilson

    Schedule Open Schedule