Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The Ballymaloe Cookbook 50 Year Anniversary Edition

In 1964, Myrtle Allen took a brave step in opening The Yeat's Room - a converted drawing room of the family country home at Ballymaloe House, East Cork to the public. Since the beginning, Mrs. Allen's food philosophy has been to showcase traditional Irish farmhouse cooking, on a seasonal menu, placing artisan producers at the forefront of each dish. It was this commitment and passion for local produce that later lead to Mrs. Allen founding Euro-toques Ireland - a leading organisation of professional cooks and chefs actively promoting Ireland's culinary heritage across Europe.

Since 1964, Mrs. Allen has earned Ballymaloe House the coveted award of a Michelin Star in the late seventies, before going on to write one of the most successful cookbooks ever printed in Ireland - the best selling Ballymaloe Cookbook - a comprehensive cookbook on Irish cooking. In May of this year, to mark fifty years of the world renowned Ballymaloe House and to celebrate Mrs. Allen's ninetieth birthday, a revised and updated edition of The Ballymaloe Cookbook has been released. The revised edition captures the history of Ballymaloe House, the impact Mrs. Allen has made on Irish cuisine, with a number of forwarded messages by key figures in Irish cooking including; Darina Allen, Ross Lewis and Georgina Campbell - all of whom share their experiences of Ballymaloe House and how it came to shape their passion for local food.

Set alongside stunning food imagery by Joanne Murphy are over a hundred recipes from classic, simple recipes taken from the past fifty years at Ballymaloe House with some never seen before recipes. The Ballymaloe Cookbook is a unique cookbook containing recipes tried, tested and loved by many guests who have dined at Ballymaloe House since 1964 and is available in all good bookshops and on the Gill and Macmillan online store here.

'It isn't just a collection of recipes but a reflection of a genuine and authentic way of life, related to the land, the culture and the produce of the country in which Myrtle Allen lives' - Financial Times

'Staying and dining in Myrthle's hotel allows for that very rare moment in time when you pause for a minute, take it all in and, all of a sudden, everything seems very okay with the world'
Yotam Ottolenghi 

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Recipe: Ballymaloe House Fruit Tart

Serves 8:

- 170g Pastry Trimmings or Shortcrust Pastry
- 450g Prepared Apples, Gooseberries, Plums, Redcurrants, Rhubarb
(or a mixture of apples and blackberries).
- 225g Caster Sugar
- 170g Puff Pastry
- Egg Wash


1. Line a 25cm (10inch) plate with pastry trimmings or shortcrust pastry rolled into a circle (it should be 5mm or 1/4in thick)

2. Thinly peel and core the apples and cut into chunks. Place them in the centre of the pastry, leaving a 1 cm (1/2inch) border round the edge. Sprinkle with sugar.

3. Roll out the puff pastry 5mm thick and cut a circle for the top of the tart. Brush the edge of the pastry base with water. Put on the top, press the edges together and knock up the sides. Cut a slit in the centre. Brush with egg wash. Bake at 200 degrees / Gas Mark 6 for an hour.

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Competition: Win A Luxurious Picnic Basket of Ballymaloe Relish Goodies & A Copy of The Ballymaloe Cookbook by Myrtle Allen

To celebrate the release of the revised edition of The Ballymaloe Cookbook, Gill & MacMillian and Ballymaloe Country Relish have come together to offer a prize to one lucky follower. The prize includes a luxurious picnic basket of Ballymaloe Relish goodies with a copy of The Ballymaloe Cookbook.

Enter the competition by clicking the link HERE