Posts Tagged ‘Discover Ireland Blog’

I cannot believe I’ve never shared this recipe on here.  I originally shared the recipe over on the Discover Ireland blog in November 2012, but here’s your chance to enjoy it too!  It is delicious.

No two ways about it, we love fish in this house!

I suppose that is not really that surprising especially when you think Alfie has spent most of his life at sea as a commercial diver… so fish is important to him.

When we moved to the Midlands, our list of priorities did not include sourcing fresh fish!

However, it wasn’t long before we realised it is virtually impossible to source fresh fish here.  Yes, you can buy a limited selection in supermarkets – but I don’t believe that fish is quite fresh.  

Our way to satisfy our longing for fresh fish was to purchase a little in-car travel fridge and everytime we go near the coast to stock up!  Our favourite destination for fresh fish is Ali’s in Barna.  Barna is so beautiful this is not really a hardship!


Barna Pier

Combine this view with the nicest Fish Shop ever!  If you are in Barna you must stop by and say hi to Connie who works there…. she really looks after her customers!

Ali's Fish Shop, Barna


We love any type of fish and a special treat of some tuna or swordfish for the bbq.

A mid-week favourite dish here is Fish Pie which I’ve adapted from the Essential Seafood Book 

The original recipe calls for white fish fillets, like ling or hake, but I use a seafood chowder mix which can contain pieces of smoked fish, prawns, salmon, white fish, or sometimes just opt for a mix of whatever fish is on ‘special’  it doesn’t matter, it is all lovely.

Be warned you use quite a few saucepans!  However, there is a silver-lining…. all the wash up is done before you sit down to dinner!! 🙂  And it truly is worth the effort involved.

As I said I’ve changed it a little bit from the original recipe!  We are so lucky here in North Tipperary – while we can’t get fresh fish handily – we do have access to the freshest raw milk  – we swap with our neighbours – we give them eggs they give us milk and we are lucky enough to have Mossfield Organic Cheese within driving distance, so rather than use cheddar I use Mossfield Gouda…. delicious!  

I now grow dill especially to have for this dish.

Fish Pie

Fish Pie (Serves 4)


  • 500 g potatoes
  • 60 ml milk or cream
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 60 g butter
  • 60 g Mossfield Cheese
  • 800 g Chowder Mix
  • 375 ml Milk
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 2 tablesp plain flour
  • 2 tablesp lemon juice
  • 2 teasp lemon rind
  • 1 tablesp chopped fresh dill
  •  Salt and Pepper


Preheat oven to 180 deg C/350 deg F/Gas 4.  Cook potatoes and mash well with the milk or cream, egg, half the butter and half the cheese.

Put the fish in a shallow pan and cover with milk.  Bring to the boil, then simmer for 2 – 3 minutes.  Drain the fish, reserving the milk and set aside.

Melt the remaining butter in a pan and cook onion and garlic over medium heat for 2 minutes.  Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute.  Remove from heat and gradually add in the reserved milk.  Return to heat and stir constantly until the sauce boils and thickens.  Reduce the heat and simmer for 2 minutes.  Add the lemon juice, lemon rind, dill and salt and pepper to taste.

Put fish in 1.5 litre ovenproof dish, and gently mix in the sauce.  Spoon the mashed potato on top and sprinkle with remaining cheese.  Bake for 35 minutes until golden.  

Serve with some fresh peas or beans from the garden.



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I was so not going to do a ‘looking back’ over 2012 post.  I would be of the belief that it is better to look forward, rather than back.

So much not so nice stuff happened in 2012 I really didn’t want to be reminded, but then when I stopped to think about it, so much really, really nice stuff happened too 🙂

There have been so many funny days and lots of sharing of home-grown food with family and friends.


So here are some of the high points, just because I am so going to ignore all the other not so high moments.


Winning the Lifestyle Blog Award – isn’t that just so totally amazing?  I really, and truly, never ever expected that.  We are still so completely overwhelmed to have received the award, thank you to all who nominated and voted – you are wonderful.  Thank you for the encouragement, support and comments – you make it all worthwhile.

Nothing really to do with the blog, but still these awards have to get a mention when we refer to 2012 – our pork has been awarded a Bridgestone and a Georgina Campbell recommendation….. how cool is that?

Winning 2 awards for our pork

Winning 2 awards for our pork

Being asked to do a ‘Guest Blog Post’ on the Discover Ireland blog, and in the first day over 1500 people read it! Another ‘holy cow’ moment 🙂


Top four posts on the blog

1.   A good death – written about Lucy’s final trip.  And we were able to bring about changes to the process.

2.  Perfect Roast Pork Belly – love the fact that every single week this post is always in the top views.

3.  An Interview with Mona and Ron – this post has had so many views over the Christmas period – do you reckon loads of folks are finally getting to read the book?  I hope sales rocketed pre-Christmas. 🙂

4.  Spread the love – a post written about other bloggers because sometimes the ‘smaller’, not so high profile blogs and bloggers don’t get the recognition they deserve.  I have discovered, read and enjoyed so many new blogs this year, sometimes we need to give recognition. (Even since writing this post, there are so many bloggers I have got to know, there will be a Spread the Love II)

Nothing quite beats our own eggs

Nothing quite beats our own eggs

Foodie stuff

Our favourite food finds of 2012 – Goatsbridge Trout Caviar and Toonsbridge Mozzarella – looking at those two names – do you reckon we’ve got a ‘bridge’ thing going on?  Totally coincidental!  Seriously though you just have to try these wonderful, wonderful Irish foods.

2012 wasn't such a good year for fruit but these were so good..

2012 wasn’t such a good year for fruit but these were so good..



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