Simple, healthy and hassle free, these words probably best sum up Irish cuisine.
So you’ve arrived in Ireland and you cannot wait to sample the local food and drink. The cuisine is mainly traditional and wholesome home cooked foods. The focus in Irish cooking was always to use fresh, locally sourced ingredients and to make enough to feed everyone – Irish families were traditionally quite large. We’re not dealing with spicy food here – but you’ll taste something so different, so unique that it won’t be matched anywhere else in the world.
No trip to Ireland would be complete without sampling some of our traditional Irish fare. I can’t think of a better way to start your day than with a mouth watering Irish breakfast. This cooked breakfast can contain almost anything once its fried but the most common ingredients include bacon, also called rashers, sausages, fried eggs (or boiled eggs), black and white pudding and tomatoes. It’s served with a couple of slices of home made soda bread. This meal will actually keep you going for much of the day!
Irish dinners consist of simple meat dishes and boiled root vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, turnips, and parsnips. The meal may be accompanied by a sauce or gravy, but most of the time these are non-existent resulting in dishes that are easy to make.
One of our most popular dishes is, of course, Irish stew – probably Ireland’s most renowned dish. It’s full of goodness and very filling and is served in the majority of pubs and restaurants throughout the country. By tradition, it’s made from either tenderised meat such as lamb or mutton but recently, beef has become a very popular ingredient as well. All the fat and gristle is removed and the meat is cut into strips or cubed. The vegetables used can vary but the majority of time it’s onions, chopped carrots, sliced potatoes as well as lamb stock and parsley to garnish. Everything is cooked in a large saucepan. There’s no waste with this meal as everything is eaten. It’s the perfect dish on cold winter’s day – it’ll warm you up in no time at all!
Bacon and Cabbage, served together with simple boiled potatoes is another classic example of traditional Irish cooking. Again, the bacon and cabbage are cooked in water in a large saucepan. During the cooking process the juices seep from the meat making the juice absolutely delicious.
With more than 2,000 miles of coastline, seafood is also an excellent choice. Smoked salmon, oysters, and mussels are all favorites. Smoked salmon with brown bread is another popular dish that comes highly recommended – the quality of seafood in Ireland is outstanding!
Coddle is a traditional Dublin dish. It’s made from pork sausages, rashers, sliced onions and potatoes and it’s then cooked in a stock. It’s normally consumed with a good pint of the black stuff! What more could you ask for!
As well as been delicious, Irish cuisine is fairly healthy – apart from the cooked breakfast that is!
The meat and vegetables are boiled and as you’re eating the juice/stock as well you’re getting all the goodness.
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