One of the very best things about visiting Ireland is the food. There is no question that the quality of our food (and drink!) on the Emerald Isle and second to none and we have a reputation to uphold. Some of the world’s most talented chefs, producers, and brands were born on our green shores and we are immensely proud of the food we produce.
If you fancy having a go at cooking some of the very best traditional Irish dishes, follow our guide and cook up a storm in your fully equipped, private kitchen in each of our serviced apartments in Dublin. Have we missed anything? Let us know!
1. DUBLIN CODDLE
With roots in working-class Dublin, we couldn’t do a food blog without mentioning the infamous Dublin coddle.
This polarising dish is loved by Dubliners but not so much by anyone outside of the pale. Traditionally, the leftovers from the meals of the week would be slowly stewed for hours, including pork sausage, bacon rasher or leftover boiled bacon pieces, potatoes, carrots and onions.
Once you get past the unusual look of the pale sausages, this dish is unrivalled when it comes to flavour and is even better served with homemade soda bread to mop up.
2. BACON & CABBAGE
Boiled bacon, boiled cabbage and boiled potatoes may not sound like the most appealing dish, but it remains a firm family favourite across Ireland for its simplicity and flavour.
A salted cut of pork is usually soaked overnight, depending how salty it was to begin with, before being boiled for hours with herbs and onion, tenderising and cooking it. The potatoes are boiled in a separate pot and the cabbage is added to the bacon water in the last ten minutes. A classic accompaniment is a homemade parsley sauce generously poured on top.
3. IRISH STEW
Another favourite across the country is a traditional Irish Stew. One-pot cooking doesn’t get any easier than this hearty dish, which was traditionally made with flavourful mutton. Mutton is harder to come by these days so modern versions usually contain lamb or beef pieces, accompanied by potatoes, onions and carrots.
Each family has a unique recipe for Irish Stew, some adding a roux to thicken it, a measure of pearl barley or some simmer it for hours to enrich the meaty flavours. Stock and herbs – such as thyme, parsley and bay leaves – are added to add depth and a thin stew should be avoided at all costs.
Similar to a stew, Steak & Guinness Pie is generally made by first making an Irish Stew, adding top quality steak pieces, and adding a half a can of Guinness, allowing the meat to simmer and soak up the delicious juices for hours. It can be served in a bowl, but you could easily use it as a base for a pie, adding a puff pastry topper, or a shortcrust pie base.
4. FULL IRISH BREAKFAST
Not one for the faint of heart, a Full Irish Breakfast is not an everyday occurrence. Often eaten over the weekend, the meal consists of some or all of the following: pork sausage, bacon rashers, fried or scrambled eggs, white pudding, black pudding (also known as blood sausage), toast and fried tomato. Sometimes you’ll find baked beans, fried mushrooms, onions, hash brown and soda bread and it should all be washed down with a steaming mug of milky Irish tea.
What sets us apart from the Full English, is the addition of white pudding, which is similar to black pudding without the blood.
5. CRISP SANDWICHES
This is more of a snack than a meal, and it may seem strange to some, but nothing beats a crisp sandwich. We Irish love bread and the stodgier the better. Buy a ‘sliced pan’ from any local shop, slather it with a good Irish butter like Kerrygold and pile it high with cheese and onion crisps, Tayto or King brand if possible. We also love chips (or fries if you’re not a local!) or banana on bread or a good old-fashioned ham and cheese sandwich.
Author Bio: Katie McGarr is a resident writer for PREMIER SUITES Dublin Leeson, a luxury hotel alternative located in the centre of Georgian Dublin which houses lavish suites and refined penthouse apartments. This travel buff has got a lot to say about travel, dining, cultural enjoyment, and lifestyle.