As we are now in the middle of level 5 restrictions I find myself once again at a loss, though I’ve maintained a day or 2 a week work I feel more at a loss now than I did at the height of the last 1. Shortly after moving house while walking my 2 dogs, I walked a path alongside a river and decided instead of turning back on myself I’d continue on and walk home the rest of the way roughly the same distance as the walk, and that I’d jog a part of the leg home. Running was a vent for me as a teenager to clear my head focus and keep fit. Alas I was sadly mistaken as to how far I could run, I struggled with around 200 meters, shocking wake up call I assure you. In my teens I thought nothing of 5k or 10k runs. I averaged approx 20, 000 steps on a day that I was working I figured a mile of a run may not have been out of my range, my legs, lungs and heart however had other ideas, “good idea kid, but no not doing that”. A week later now I’ve just completed a mile and a half jogging, my legs now feeling it. I suppose the moral of my story, excercise in increments, not on a whim. I now plan to continue until I can successfully run 10k who knows maybe a marathon. All help and advice is appreciated. As always stay safe, support local. follow my journey @chefpaulc on all social media.
600g/1lb 5oz Bramley apples, peeled, quartered and cut into chunks
1 litre/1¾ pints vegetable stock
150ml/5fl oz milk
flaked sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Melt the butter and oil in a large saucepan. Gently fry the onions and parsnips for 15 minutes, or until the onions are softened. Add the garlic and apples and cook for a further two minutes, stirring regularly.
Pour over the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes, or until the parsnips are very soft. Remove from the heat and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Blend the mixture in a food processor until smooth.
Stir in the milk, adding a little extra if required. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Place of Work: Croí Restaurant and cocktail heist tapas bar
When I Started: February 2020, I went to Croí looking for work experience for school and I started that weekend. My first night working was Valentine’s Day, so I got a good idea of what a busy kitchen was like. My week of work experience went well and I learned a lot, I was really enjoying it but it was coming to an end until, on the last night of work experience Chef Noel came into the kitchen just before service and asked if I would like to come in on the coming Friday and start working properly. The offer caught me off guard but I instantly said yes, I saw it as a chance to learn a lot more about this trade and I’m always learning something new in the best place to learn it, a kitchen. I Worked all summer, after the Covid-19 lockdown was lifted of course and I plan to keep working here for a while and keep contributing to Tralee Culinary Gangsters as well.
A couple of pictures from my dish I created tonight in the Rose Hotel, Tomato TarTar with smoked Salmon.
Beetroot peure, mint powder , rose petals and edible flowers and hearbs from my garden.
Created this dish from experience I picked up threw the years of chefing by learning my art on a plate. Flavour, foraging and gardening.
Was 16 when I was offered my first job, wasn’t chefing it was actually meant to be a kitchen porter, but my head chef and mentor for the past almost 8 years looked at me and said get a uniform you start Monday, I didn’t want to chef at the start, just wanted money cause I was Young, never liked the job as a chef until I was shown how to cook and found out you can never stop learning, fell in love with it and my trade and wanted to learn all the time, still to this day I google and research recipes and cooking skills, love what I do and I am always excited to learn more and will never get enough knowledge because it’s endless
Since all this started, I like many of my colleagues across the industry and in general the public have been afforded an opportunity to evaluate life, and the work life balance. Many people will have experienced this differently to what I did.
I’m fortunate in a sense that I live in the countryside, far from town and near to forestry walkways.
My wife has adapted to her new learning from the college i.e online classes and exams quite well with a nice set up in the kitchen.
All exams passed with flying colours.
For me I need to get out to and into a kitchen as they seem to be the only place my life makes sense I don’t know why it just does for me. I get to kill 2 birds with one stone I get to give back to the community and get out of the house and build a network for myself for the future. I’ve known my kitchen comerades Paul and Karl for a while but never really got to know them.
By providing meals on wheels for SVP I have learned that we are still a community at heart something that many believed myself included non existent previous to lockdown. The community approach to this has been fantastic across the country and the rural community ramped up production on their existing efforts in the rural centres for Irish life. Yes, I’m referring to villages and small towns with senior groups or aid groups for the community prime example my own village Knocknagoshel already providing meals laundry etc from the community centre added extra delivery and shopping from the village and they deserve a massive thank you.
Now as it eases and “normality” resumes now I hope that this community sprirt and local support continues. I now myself have had time to think and contemplate what aspects of what I want the new normal to be. I now have rearranged my priorities and I needed a kick up the backside to see what everyone has always said to me and others no doubt in my shoes since the dawn of time, choosing family over my career is now to the forefront of what I want and desire. Honestly I always believed it myself and was going my own way about it by putting in the work for my life to enable an ease of life later. Seems logical to me, not any more thankfully.
Chef Karl gave us a delicious roast pork recipe ideal for your Sunday Roast!
🌹1kg of Lion of Pork
🌹200g almond flakes
🌹200g almond flakes
🌹10g garlic salt
🌹1 teaspoon fennel seeds
🌹1 teaspoon salt
🌹2 slices bread
Blend all together to a fine bread crumb. Cut the eye of the pork open to make one long sheet of pork. Score the meat and pack the filling on top and roll the meat tight. Tie the meat up as best you can. Run plenty of salt on the skin.
Roast for 1 1/2 hour 170oc and turn the heat up to 200oc to create a crisp skin. PLEASE LEAVE THE MEAT REST FOR 10 MINS ONCE IT IS COOKED. Adjust the cooking time according to the weight of the meat.
Chicken chorizo roast potatoes easy peasy.
10g ground corrainder
10g Black mustard seeds
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tin of chickpeas
Break chicken down as shown.
Season with paprika, ground corrainder and salt.
Pan fry add black mustard seeds and chorizo.
Season the baby potatoes and roast.
Blend the tin of tomato with a knorr stock cube add half a tin of water.
Pour over the chicken and Place a lid on top and cook for 30-35 mins until the chicken is falling off the bone.
Remove chicken from pan Place in the oven with potatoes.
Add one tin of chickpeas to sauce and reduce.
Plate up and get some napkins
#chicken #lockdowndinners #fingerlicking
6 chicken thighs bone-in
Salt and pepper to season
2 tablespoons olive oil 1 medium onion diced
2 tablespoons minced garlic (or 8 cloves)
1 small yellow bell pepper diced
1 small red bell pepper diced 1 large carrot peeled and sliced
10 oz (300g) mushrooms sliced
1/2 cup pitted black olives
8 sprigs thyme
2 tablespoons each freshly chopped parsley and basil plus more to garnish1 teaspoon dried oregano
150 ml red wine
28 oz (820g) crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
7 oz (200g) Roma tomatoes halved1/2 teaspoon
red pepper flakes
Season chicken with salt and pepper.
Heat oil in a heavy cast iron skillet. Fry the onion until transparent (about 3-4 minutes) then add in the garlic and sauté until fragrant (about 30 seconds).
Add the peppers, carrot, mushrooms and herbs; sauté for 5 minutes until vegetables are beginning to soften.
Add the chicken and sear on both sides until golden
Pour in the wine; allow to simmer and reduce down (about 5-6 minutes).
Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, Roma tomatoes and chill flakes. Season with salt and pepper to your tastes. Continue to cook over stove top OR in the oven following the instructions below
Cook on the stove top on low heat till the chicken is falling off the bone
As many in the industry will attest to back and knee issues as the time goes by in the industry strain builds up,
For me all this came to a head in late November last year, I felt a twinge and thought no more shake it off work on.
Next day I was fine for about 2 hours then a niggle, began to arise and grew to an unbearable agony I was on my knees washing down (shift nearly done). It’s a me thing I cant lie down I don’t go home early.
Day 3 I was handed some tiger balm to ease the pain for a small amount of time. I managed the weekend through deep heat and tiger balm so easy working, I still refuse to go home or stop it’s me most people no chance not coming in.
I then received a number to go to a person in Castleisland who I now refer to as my pint size punisher.
I explained my story and she said come in and she’d look at it.
Met her on the Tuesday and my 1st session I was in pieces the day after I barely moved Thursday I felt back to “normal” no pain working that weekend.
The next week another session and the week after another session.
Moral of my story ask for help. The stain on muscles builds up over time and it takes time and is extremely sore to put it right. Worth every penny of the recovery not for the pain just not worth it when you feel the knots in your shoulder popping like bubblewrap, sorry but no chance.
I’ve been planning this piece for a bit but never came to the right way to put it.