Marian Finucane

Marian Finucane

Saturday, Sunday, 11 - 1pm

Marian Finucane Saturday 4 October 2014

Marian Finucane

Marian Finucane

Live stimulating mix of news, interviews, reports and discussion.

Stephen Fry

Stephen Fry

Stephen Fry joins Marian to talk about the third installment of his autobiography: 'More Fool Me'

Brain Health

Brain Health

Professor Brian Lawlor and Dr. Sabina Brennan join Marian to talk about brain health.


For more information: Click Here

Stephen Clinch

Stephen Clinch

Actor and reformed addict Stephen Clinch joins Marian to talk about a grisly discovery and also his acting life after a difficult early life.

Starting Your Own Business

Starting Your Own Business

Joanne Hession - entrapeneur and owner of QED Training, chartered accountant Rory Finnegan and film maker Daragh Murphy join Marian to talk about starting your own business.

Jordan Bourke - The Natural Food Kitchen

Jordan Bourke - The Natural Food Kitchen

Jordan Bourke is a chef, food stylist and author. His latest book "The Natural Food Kitchen" explores how we can use naturally healthy alternatives to refined flours.

Jordan joins Marian in studio.

Recipes taken from Natural Food Kitchen by Jordan Bourke, photography Tara Fisher, published by Ryland Peters and Small

Josie's Irish Barmbrack

450 g sultanas (50% currants another option)
350 ml cold Chai tea (Josie’s recipe uses strong black tea, but I love the extra spice in Chai!)
225 g white spelt flour
200 g coconut palm sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon mixed spice
1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
zest of 1 orange or lemon, finely grated
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs, lightly beaten
salted butter or non-dairy alternative, to serve
450 g loaf pan, lined with parchment paper

Serves 10–12

Steep the sultanas in the cold tea overnight. The next day, preheat oven to 180°C (360ºF) Gas 4.
In a bowl, mix together the flour, coconut palm sugar, spices, orange or lemon zest, baking powder and sultanas, including the cold tea. Add in the lightly beaten eggs and combine.

Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf pan and bake in the centre of the oven for about 11⁄2 hours until a skewer comes out clean. If it looks like it is going to burn on top, cover with aluminium foil. Remove and leave to cool for 10 minutes before turning it out onto a wire rack. In Ireland, it is served in thick slices with Irish salted butter slathered on top. It is equally delicious with a non-dairy butter and a little sprinkle of sea salt. My favourite is extra virgin coconut butter – it is divine!

Fruits of the Forest Cake

4 eggs
225 g white spelt flour
225 g sunflower butter?
190 g xylitol
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
21⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of sea salt
400 g raspberries, redcurrants, blueberries and strawberries – halved and hulled
For the coconut cream frosting:
2 x 400-ml cans of coconut milk, refrigerated overnight to let the milk separate from the cream
11⁄2 tablespoons xylitol
2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
3 unwaxed lemons, very finely zested
2 x 20 cm cake pans, greased and lined with parchment paper

Serves 10
For the coconut cream frosting, first remove the cans of coconut milk from the fridge. Open and carefully scoop out only the very thickest, almost solid, white cream, leaving the thinner and clear coconut cream and water behind. This can be used for porridge, soups, curries etc. You should have about 400 ml of the thick cream from the 2 cans. Put the 11⁄2 tablespoons xylitol in a spice grinder and mix so that it forms a powder – it needs to be as fine as icing sugar to work. Combine together the coconut cream with the melted coconut oil, powdered xylitol (reserving 1⁄2 a teaspoon or so to sprinkle over the finished cake) and lemon zest. Refrigerate while you make the cake.
Preheat the oven to 180°C (360°F) Gas 4. Place the eggs, spelt flour (no need to sift), sunflower butter, 190 g xylitol, vanilla extract, baking powder and salt into the bowl of a food processor (or mix by hand), until everything is smooth and has just combined together. Do not overmix or the cake will be tough.
Divide the mixture evenly between the 2 prepared cake pans and level out. Bake in the centre of the oven for 22–25 minutes, until golden, and firm with a slight spring to the touch. Leave to cool for 10 minutes then remove from pans. Once completely cool, (otherwise the coconut cream will melt), ice the top side of one of the cakes and cover with berries. Carefully ice the underside of the other cake and position on top of the other cake.
Ice the top of this cake this time decorating with the remaining berries. Sift over the reserved powdered xylitol.
Tip: When buying coconut milk to use for cream, read the ingredients and buy one that has coconut extract of at least 50–60 %, but the higher the better. This frosting will not work unless the coconut cream is very thick and almost solid after refrigeration. Some brands of coconut milk are treated so they stay as liquid even when refrigerated, so test out a few brands to find the best one. Any brands that have not set can be used for curry, porridge, soups etc.

Almond, Coconut & Date Cake
with rose water & cardamom


For the cake:
200 g/11⁄3 cups whole almonds
100 g/11⁄3 cups desiccated coconut
100 g/2⁄3 cup stoned/ pitted Medjool dates
3 eggs, beaten
150 g/3⁄4 cup coconut palm sugar 
150 ml/2⁄3 cup sunflower oil
50 ml/3 tablespoons coconut milk
8 cardamom pods, shells removed, seeds ground to a powder
zest of 1 unwaxed lemon, finely grated
1 teaspoon baking powder
1⁄4 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon rose water

For the syrup:
1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
50 ml/3 tablespoons pure maple syrup

To serve:
4 tablespoons/1⁄4 cup coconut chips, lightly roasted
2 tablespoons dried rose petals (optional)
250 ml/1 cup soya or Greek yogurt mixed with 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup and 1 teaspoon rose water

Serves 8–10

Line a 20-cm/8-inch loose-bottomed cake pan with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 170°C (325ºF) Gas 3.

Place the almonds and desiccated coconut in a food processor and blitz until the almonds are very finely chopped, but not a paste, remove to a bowl. Add the dates and eggs into the processor and blitz until the dates are finely chopped and mixed into the eggs. Add into the bowl with the almonds and the rest of the cake ingredients and mix thoroughly until well combined. Pour into the prepared cake pan and level out. Bake in the centre of the oven for 40–45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove and leave to cool for 10 minutes, then turn out of the pan onto a cooling rack.

Pumpkin & Coconut Laksa

We often cook laksa at home – a Malaysian noodle soup of sorts with sour, sweet, salty and spicy notes. You can buy laksa curry paste, but I have given you the recipe here as the flavour is much better and it keeps well in the fridge or freezer. Delica pumpkins, with their emerald green skin and vibrant orange flesh (it’s practically an Irish flag, so you can’t go wrong!), are great in this dish. However, they are not always available in supermarkets, so you can use any kind of squash instead.

1 delica pumpkin or butternut squash, peeled, halved and deseeded
2 tablespoons olive oil
sea salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 shallots, thinly sliced
4 tablespoons of the curry paste (see below)
3 tablespoons coconut palm sugar or pure maple syrup
11⁄2 teaspoons sea salt
zest and juice of 1 lime (about 2 tablespoons), plus another lime, cut into wedges, to serve
2 tablespoons tamarind paste (alternatively use another 2 tablespoons of lime juice)
2 x 400-ml cans coconut milk
400 ml vegetable stock
handful of spinach leaves
200 g rice noodles
1⁄2 a red onion, sliced
1 fresh red chilli, deseeded and thinly sliced
small handful of fresh mint leaves

For the curry paste:
3 fresh red chillies, deseeded
2 teaspoons chilli flakes
4 shallots, roughly chopped
5 garlic cloves, peeled
3 lemongrass stalks, outer leaves and woody ends removed, chopped
3-cm piece fresh ginger, skin scraped off with a teaspoon
1 tablespoons ground coriander
1 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoons ground turmeric
4 lime leaves (optional)

Serves 4

For the curry paste, add everything to a food processor with 6 tablespoons of water and blitz until you have a paste, scraping down the sides when needed. This will take at least 2 minutes of constant blitzing.

Preheat the oven to 180°C (360ºF) Gas 4. Cut the pumpkin or squash halves into 3 cm chunks, drizzle with the olive oil, season with salt and roast in the preheated oven for 30 minutes until cooked through.

Place a large pot with 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil over a medium heat. Add in the shallots and stir-fry for a few minutes until softened. Turn down the heat, add 4 tablespoons of the curry paste and cook gently for 5 minutes until fragrant. Add in the sugar or maple syrup, salt, lime zest and juice and tamarind paste. Cook for another few minutes until the sugar has dissolved and everything is sizzling. Add in the coconut milk and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer briskly for 10 minutes. Taste the soup and if necessary adjust the seasoning with a little more salt, lime juice or coconut palm sugar. You should be able to taste all the sour, salty and sweet elements quite strongly. Add in the cooked pumpkin or squash and the spinach leaves, stirring into the sauce until slightly wilted.

Cook the noodles in boiling water, according to the packet instructions. Ladle the soup into bowls and then add in a mound of noodles. Scatter over some of the red onion, chilli and mint leaves and serve immediately with the lime wedges to squeeze over. 

Pan-fried Chickpea Fritters

2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1⁄2 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
250 g soy or Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
sea salt
120 g spelt flour (white or wholegrain)
1⁄2 teaspoon baking powder
170 ml rice, soy or dairy milk
1 egg, lightly beaten
400-g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
100 g red onion, finely chopped
1 small handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 small handful coriander, finely chopped
olive or vegetable oil, for frying
1 spring onion, finely sliced diagonally
extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling

Makes 16

In a dry frying pan/, gently fry the cumin seeds over a medium heat until aromatic. Pound 1⁄2 of them to a powder using a pestle and mortar, and keep the other 1⁄2 to one side. In a bowl, combine together the ground cumin, chilli flakes, yogurt, maple syrup and a good pinch of sea salt. Set to one side.
Place the flour and baking powder in a large bowl, slowly whisk in the rice, soy or dairy milk and beaten egg, until well combined with no lumps. Add in the chickpeas, red onion, almost all of the herbs, remaining cumin seeds, 3⁄4 teaspoon sea salt and a few grindings of black pepper. Stir together to combine.
Place 1 tablespoon of olive or vegetable oil in a large, non-stick frying pan and set over a medium-high heat. Once hot, add 2 level tablespoons of batter for each fritter and flatten into little rounds. Fry in batches, without overcrowding the frying pan, for about 5 minutes, turning once, until they are golden brown and cooked through.
To serve, pile the fritters up on individual plates and scatter over the sliced spring onions and extra parsley. Serve with a green salad. Finally, drizzle over some extra virgin olive oil. Spoon the set-aside yogurt mixture over the top or serve it in a bowl on the side.
Trout Stuffed with Farro, Dates & Pine Nuts

150 g farro
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar ?
extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed??
1 handful coriander, chopped
1 handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
30 g pine nuts, lightly roasted until golden
4 Medjool dates, stoned pitted and chopped
2 lemons, 1 zested and halved, the other cut into wedges
2 trout, cleaned,
gutted and scaled

Serves 4–6

Rinse the farro thoroughly until the water runs clear. Add to a pot of cold water with a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 20–25 minutes until al dente. Farro has a lovely natural chewiness to it and you want to keep that texture, so taste it a few times until the consistency is just right. Drain off the water and immediately, while still hot, stir in the red wine vinegar and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, season to taste with sea salt and black pepper.
Sweat out the onion in a frying pan with a tablespoon of oil over a medium heat until softened. Add in the garlic and cook for a further 1–2 minutes until aromatic. Add in the cooked farro and combine together with the coriander, most of the parsley, the pine nuts, Medjool dates and lemon zest. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) Gas 6. Season the trout with salt and pepper, both inside and out. Place on a baking sheet with enough aluminium foil or parchment paper to create a parcel. Stuff the cavity of the fish with the farro, squeeze a little juice from the zested lemon halves around the fish and then nestle the lemon beside them. Seal the parcel tightly and bake in the centre of the oven for 15 minutes. Open the parcel exposing the fish and cook for another 5 minutes until the skin is slightly blistered and golden.

Serve on a platter with the lemon wedges and the remaining parsley.

About The Show

In-depth interviews, human interest stories, consumer and lifestyle news as well as a lively panel discussion on issues of the week and newspaper reviews.

Saturday and Sunday from 11am-1pm



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Presenter: Marian Finucane


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