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Archive for September, 2008

Ireland AM

For those early risers among you, my brother and partner in ice cream Sean will be on Ireland AM on TV3 tomorrow morning (Wednesday) at around 8:30am to talk about the food festival and ice cream. He’ll be joined by a couple of other food producers…

Any Ideas?

 We’ve been working on our meringues again (recipe here), and here’s a dessert that we’d like to introduce into the shops.

It’s a meringue nest base, filled with cream. On top of that is a scoop of ice cream, some sauce, some more cream, and a little meringue hat.

We’ve tried it with:

  • Strawberry ice cream and strawberry sauce
  • Honeycomb ice cream and caramel sauce
  • Chocolate ice cream and chocolate sauce

… and they are all delicious.

The problem is, we need a name for this dessert.

Any ideas?

(If you think up a good one, I’ll give you a free one on your next trip to Kerry!)

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South Wind Blows

For anyone wanting to listen in, I’ll be on the South Wind Blows on RTE Radio One with Philip King this evening at 8:00 talking about the food festival, the food awards, ice cream, and playing some of the music we play in our shops

You can listen to the archive of it here.

Bandita!

 It’s been a while since uncle fever has hit this site, so here are a couple of photos of my niece Una.

The background:

We ordered some props for our Mexican Flavour Fiesta (hats, ponchos, and even mustaches – spare a thought for our poor staff), and when I arrived at our Dingle shop this afternoon, I found Una trying on one of the hats.

I thought it was so cute, I had to bolt home to grab my camera.

She had run out of patience with the hat by the time I returned, so I had to bribe her with ice cream to get her to pose. I think it was well worth it!

Anyway, we’ve made most of the fiesta ice creams, and there’s only a week to go before the food festival. We’re all looking forward to it, and I just hope our customers like the Mexican flavours as much as we do!

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Margarita Sorbet

 Here’s the second of the flavours we’re doing for our Mexican Fiesta at the rapidly approaching Dingle Food and Wine Festival. Margarita sorbet should be a real crowd pleaser, and we’re certainly quite enamoured of it.

There are as many stories about the origins of the Margarita as there are ways of making it. A classic Margarita would generally have tequila, triple sec (such as Cointreau) and lime juice. The ratio varies, but a typical one would be (in order of the above) 2:1:1. It’s a drink I love in all its variations, as long as I can lay my hands on good tequila (which is not always easy in these parts). Way back when I lived in Texas, my favourite Mexican restaurant, Fonda San Miguel served the most amazing frozen varieties.

For the ice cream, we’ve done it with and without the triple sec, and I think I prefer the latter. I’m not sure why that is, for I certainly like the hint of orange in the drink. We also like it with a little lemon, but you can substitute lime. I’ll leave it up to you!

Murphys Margarita Sorbet

Ingredients:

  • 340 gr sugar
  • 500 ml spring water
  • 100 ml good tequila (or a combination of tequila and triple sec)
  • 300 ml freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 60 ml lemon juice (or more lime juice)
  • Pinch of salt

What to do:

  1. Boil the water, then remove from the heat.
  2. Stir in the sugar, until it is completely dissolved.
  3. Cover immediately and cool completely.
  4. Stir in the tequila, lime, and lemon juice.
  5. Taste it to make sure you like it!
  6. Freeze using a domestic ice cream machine, or cover and place in the freezer, stirring at 1 hr intervals to break up the ice.

Note:

It’s hard to make sorbet without an ice cream machine. You will need to interrupt the freezing process and stir, or you will be left with a block of ice! The more times you do this, the better the consistency will be.

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Not Our Year

 I’m back in a subdued and quiet Kerry after a trip to Dublin for the All Ireland. For a neutral, it must have been quite entertaining. For us it was a very stressful match, and unfortunately, the photo above shows the closest we came to the cup. Tyrone deserved their victory, and must be congratulated for their achievement.

For most of the game, the teams were so evenly matched it looked to be heading for a draw, but Tyrone pulled away in the last minutes and Kerry had no response. 

It was a glum trip back on the train, but there were some positives including:

  1. Sun!!!
  2. Fantastic seats five rows from the sideline.
  3. A great evening out in Howth last night with friends and a meal at Ivans.
  4. The fact that it wasn’t a draw has a bright side in so far as the Dingle Food Festival and the replay would have coincided, which would have made things really awkward.  

Here in Kerry, anything short of winning the final is a disappointment, but the county will proudly stand behind the team and live in hope for next year…

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Is It Just a Matter of Time?

 Dingle has always been a town of independent shops and small retailers. Boutiques and butchers were the norm, with a large helping of pubs, and there was no sign of international chains. This year, however, three companies have moved in – Boyle’s Sports, Lidl, and now Subway.

At the same time, most of the butchers have shut their doors, pubs are struggling, one boutique has closed already this year, and another is following. With the terrible weather of the past summer having a huge impact on tourism combined with the economic downturn and tight credit, it seems all too likely that more of the small shops and restaurants will follow. 

I suppose it’s inevitable that Dingle will become just as homogenous as everywhere else in years to come. Some people are delighted to see the chains coming in (especially the discount ones) since they have been complaining about high prices, but it makes me sad. In the end there will be less character and ultimately less choice. 

Let’s just hope there’s still room for this independent ice cream maker!

Burgers, Tapas, and Italian in Killorglin

 Even thought I’m in Killarney all the time, I very rarely get to Killorglin, though it’s a minimal detour. A few days ago, I had a bit of time to kill and a bit of hunger and decided to check out the offerings.

One of my excuses for going was to visit the Real Burger Co. (photo right), who have recently become a customer. They seem to be doing quite well, and really take effort with their menu and range of gourmet burgers (not to mention the ice cream!). I like their website as well.

We decided for food, however, to have more of a sit down meal and went to Sol y Samba (photo top) for some tapas. The restaurant is in a former church on top of a hill, and it certainly has one of the nicest interiors of any restaurant in Ireland. With Spanish staff, a good range of wines, and even some entertainment from time to time, it’s a great asset to the town.

Another place worth a mention is Giovannelli Restaurant. I met Daniele at the Dingle Food Festival last year, where he was selling fantastic Italian produce at the farmer’s market. His new place seems to be quite popular (it was fully booked on a weeknight), and the offerings look appetising indeed.

We had to be content with picking up some Italian cheese from the deli counter at the back of the place (he also has a range of Italian meats and sausages).

If you’re in Killorglin, you’re certainly not going to go hungry!

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Author

Kieran Murphy is a director of Murphys Ice Cream living in Dingle, Co. Kerry, Ireland.

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Company

Murphys Ice Cream

Murphys Ice Cream has shops in Dingle, Killarney and Dublin 2 (Wicklow Street).

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