Lough Erne Resort’s Executive Chef Noel McMeel shares St Patrick’s Day recipes that celebrate local produce

To celebrate St Patricks Day, Lough Erne Resort Executive chef, Noel McMeel, has shared some favourite recipes for a range of mouthwatering dishes that you can make at home.

Noel has cooked for an impressive range of dignitaries and celebrities, including Barack Obama and Sir Paul McCartney, but the talented chef remains focused on his particular brand of modern Irish cooking and a very simple philosophy: sourcing, preparing and serving fresh food in season.

From Pat O’Doherty’s pork to fresh Kilkeel crab, Noel McMeel is a true champion for local produce, using only the highest quality ingredients in his recipes.

To mark St Patrick’s Day, why not enjoy some of Noel’s mouth-watering recipes, celebrating local Irish producers and taking inspiration from his early days in his family farm in Toome?

Spring lamb rump with black garlic puree

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

4 lamb rumps
30g lamb fat
1 sprig of rosemary, leaves stripped
2 garlic cloves,
Crushed salt to taste
For the black garlic puree:
190g black garlic, peeled
85ml water
15g xanthan gum
2.5g salt
15ml white wine vinegar
15g caster sugar

METHOD

Set the oven to 180C/gas mark 4. Start on the lamb rump by placing half the lamb fat in a pan on a medium to high heat. Season thoroughly all over and place the rump fat-side down in the pan. Continue to turn until all sides are sealed and golden brown. Transfer the pan to the oven and cook for 6 minutes.

Remove from the oven and add the remaining lamb fat, rosemary and garlic. Coat the lamb in the rosemary and garlic mixture. Set aside to rest.

Return the lamb rump to the oven for a further 3 minutes.

For the black garlic puree, place all the ingredients in a blender, but with boiling hot water instead of cold water. Pass through a fine sieve and set aside to cool.

Prepare the dish by piping the black garlic on the plate. Carve the lamb rump which can be placed on any vegetable of your choice.

Guinness and Treacle Bread

WHAT YOU’LL NEED
 

9 oz wholemeal flour

2 oz of strong flour

1 tsp of bread soda

1 oz of pinehead oatmeal

1 oz of wheat bran

1 tsp of salt

1 oz of brown sugar

4 fl oz of Guinness

4 tbsp of black treacle (80 ml)

2 fl oz of melted butter

4 fl oz of milk

1 egg

METHOD:

Combine all dry ingredients.

Melt treacle in the butter and add the Guinness, milk and egg.

Combine the two mixtures.

Pour into a 11b loaf tin and bake it for about 45 minutes at 160 c.

Turn out onto a tray and cook for a further 15 minutes.

Irish Stew 

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

11⁄2kg/3lb 5oz stewing beef, cut into cubes

175g/6oz streaky bacon

3 tbsp olive oil

12 baby onions, peeled

3 Small Parsnips

3 carrots, cut into quarters or 12 baby carrots, scrubbed and left whole

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tbsp chopped thyme

2 tbsp chopped parsley

10 cloves of garlic, crushed and grated

425ml/15fl oz red wine

425ml/15fl oz chicken or beef stock

For the roux
50g/2oz butter
50g/13⁄4oz flour

METHOD

Brown the beef and bacon in the olive oil in a hot casserole or heavy saucepan.

Remove the meat and toss in the onions, parsnips and carrots, one ingredient at a time, seasoning each time.

Place these back in the casserole, along with the herbs and garlic.

Cover with red wine and stock and simmer for one hour or until the meat and vegetables are cooked.

To make the roux, in a separate pan melt the butter, add the flour and cook for two minutes.

When the stew is cooked, remove the meat and vegetables.

Bring the remaining liquid to the boil and add one tbsp of roux.

Whisk the mixture until the roux is broken up and the juices have thickened, allowing it to come to the boil.

Replace the meat and vegetables, and taste for seasoning.

Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with champ.

Hot rhubarb souffle with home-made custard

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

250g fresh rhubarb
50g caster sugar
50g water
100g soft ball sugar
Corn flour to thicken
3 egg whites
For the custard:
1 vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
150ml/5floz milk
100ml/3½oz double cream
2 free-range egg yolks
25g/1oz caster sugar

METHOD

Bring the rhubarb, water and 50g sugar to a simmer, then blend until it is smooth and pass through a fine sieve.

Return mixture to a clean saucepan and leave to the side.

Bring 100g caster sugar, and a little water to bind, to the boil and simmer on to the soft ball stage (110C).

Add this to the rhubarb mix, then bring the mixture back to heat slowly.

Dissolve the corn flour with a little water and thicken the raspberry mix to a crème
pate consistency.

When thick, put into a clean mixing bowl and leave to cool, mixing with a whisk to speed up the process.

Whisk three egg whites to soft peaks and when the rhubarb mixture is cool enough, beat in half the eggs, then gently fold in the other half.

Pipe into the prepared moulds and place in a bain marie then bake at 190C for 10 to 12 minutes. Sprinkle the top with some icing sugar and quickly serve.

To make the custard, place a small saucepan over a high heat. Add the vanilla seeds and the empty pod, milk and cream and bring to a simmer.

Remove from the heat and allow to stand, letting the flavours infuse.

Meanwhile, beat the egg yolks with the sugar in a large bowl.

Next, remove the vanilla pod from the infused cream and gradually pour the vanilla cream into the egg mix, whisking well continuously.

Return the custard to the saucepan. Stir over a gentle heat until the custard thickens and coats the back of the spoon.

Sprinkle the top of each souffle with some icing sugar and quickly serve with the custard.

Boxty

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

125g raw peeled potato (a floury variety such as Dunbar Standard or Maris Piper)
125g mashed potato, made from 200g floury potatoes, peeled and cooked
125g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
½tsp baking powder
½tsp salt
Large knob of salted butter, melted and cooled
A little milk if necessary

METHOD

Grate the raw potato into a bowl. Turn out onto a cloth and wring over a bowl, catching the liquid. This will separate into a clear fluid with starch at the bottom. Pour off and discard the fluid, then scrape out the starch and mix it with the grated and mashed potatoes.

Sift the dry ingredients and mix into the potatoes with the melted butter, adding a little milk if necessary, to make a pliable dough. Knead lightly on a floured surface.

Pan-fry in a hot pan with some oil until golden brown and serve.

Granny’s fruit scones

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

450g plain flour
Pinch of salt
2tsp bicarbonate of soda
2tsp cream of tartar
50g caster sugar
50g butter
100g sultanas
300ml whole milk
1 egg, beaten

METHOD

Pre-heat your oven to 220C/gas mark 7. Grease two baking sheets with a little butter and set aside.

Sift the flour, salt, bicarbonate of soda and cream of tartar into a large bowl (this is what makes baking powder), holding the sift up to allow some air into them. Gently stir in the sugar.

Using the tips of your fingers, rub in the butter to the dry ingredients, again lifting as you do to allow air in. Continue until you have a sandy consistency.

Stir in the sultanas and create a well in the middle. Add milk to the well and, using your hands, gently bring the ingredients together to form a soft, slightly sticky dough.

Turn out onto a floured work surface and gently knead together, before stretching the dough to about 2cm thickness.

Using a cookie cutter of your choice, cut your scones out and place them onto your pre-greased baking sheets. The smaller your cutter, the more scones you will get. Reform and stretch the dough as required to use all of the dough.

Leave your scones to rest on the tray for about 10 minutes before brushing the tops with some beaten egg.

Once cool enough to touch, transfer to a wire rack to cool completely or enjoy while still warm.

Love Belfast
Belfast guide to restaurants, bars, nightclubs, concerts, events, hotels, entertainment, special offers, news, gossip, travel, festivals and culture. http://lovebelfast.co.uk

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