Blogs

Margaret started her career in Cathal Brugha Street where she completed a professional cookery course and Culinary Arts degree. During her time in college, she also spent time working in the Merrion Hotel, in the pastry section along with Paul Kelly. After working in the Merrion for nearly 4 years, Margaret moved to the Waterside Inn, where she met Mr.Roux and spent the next 3 years, before leaving to travel. Since then she has been the head chef in Hugo's Restaurant in Dublin, worked in The Wild Honey Inn in Clare and is currently working in The Brooklodge and Macreddin Village as a senior chef de partie. _________________________________________________________ ...
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KITCHEN CULTURE Meet the chefs & teams of Ireland’s professional kitchens, with Chef Network The Chef Network community brings together chefs at all levels from all sectors across Ireland. In a  Hotel & Restaurant Times  regular column we meet some members and hear from them what inspires and motivates them, their career challenges and opportunities, and how they believe we can improve the industry. In this edition, we meet Glen Wheeler , Chef & Owner of 28 Darling Street in Co. Fermanagh Why did you become a chef? I actually fell into the whole thing honestly. When I was growing up, I always wanted to be a ...
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Is there such a thing as a free lunch? They say “ There is no such thing as a free lunch ” – that may hold true until you discover foraging! Little did I know when my father took me picking wild mushroom at the age of 6 that I would end up on the island of Ireland, picking much more than just mushrooms. Nowadays, I collect wild foods from forests, hills, meadows, seashore and the sea. Foraging has undergone an unprecedented renaissance and not only in Ireland. However, for me, it is much more than just the collection of wild food. It brings me in contact with nature; it is the equivalent of a good workout; it allows me to be reflective and mindful while ...
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Part of being sustainable means cutting down on the amount of utilities you use throughout your business. In the process of running a business, it’s common that a big portion of income ends up being spent on these resources. It makes sense that a business becomes more sustainable by cutting down on all the unnecessary uses of utilities as well as saving money overall. Utilities In my opinion, all Restaurateurs and Chefs need to know the cost that Water, Gas and Electricity plays within the business. Look at the long run. Invest in ways to be more resourceful, it will pay off over time. Giving the example of induction hobs, we’ve seen ...
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Shane Farrell is a 1st-year Culinary ARTS Student in TU Dublin - Tallaght   Deciding to Become a Chef Growing up, becoming a chef was never something that occurred to me. It was never what I saw myself working as full-time. I’ve always cooked, and I enjoyed baking with my Granny when I was young. Food was always important in our house, but it never felt like a career path for me. I actually started off studying Marine engineering in CIT after my leaving certificate. I wanted to work on boats and ships, not in kitchens. Then, in a twist of fate, I crashed my motorcycle and ended up breaking multiple bones. As a result, I deferred a year ...
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DISH PRESENTATION: SOME TRENDS AND TIPS If you aspire to be the Rembrandt of the culinary world but struggle to make your dishes look like works of art, then you should definitely read this blog by Gastronomixs.com for trends and tips on dish presentation.   Fashionable dishes Looking back at the last century of gastronomy, you will recognise a number of styles in dish presentation. It's similar to fashion: one trendsetter starts a movement, and the rest follows. An example of a plating style is the ‘classical presentation’ of placing the elements of the dish on specific parts of the plate. A past trend was to serve dishes in glasses, ...
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KITCHEN CULTURE Meet the chefs & teams of Ireland’s professional kitchens, with Chef Network The Chef Network community brings together chefs at all levels from all sectors across Ireland. In a Hotel & Restaurant Times regular column we meet some members and hear from them what inspires and motivates them, their career challenges and opportunities, and how they believe we can improve the industry. In this edition, we meet Grainne O’Keefe, head chef at Clanbrassil House in Dublin Why did you become a chef? I think I’ve always been really interested in food, although I didn’t come from having an amazing background in ...
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Studying to be a Chef I’ve just started my first year at TUD, studying Culinary Arts in the City Centre Campus. I’m 17 years old, and I’ve just finished secondary school. I want to become a pastry chef.   Why Cheffing? I have always been interested in food, so deciding to study culinary arts was a straight-forward decision for me. I’ve grown up surrounded by food, my father is a butcher so good food has always played a central role in home life for me. My mother and granny were always baking, it wasn’t unusual to spend our Saturdays in the kitchen gazing into the oven, eagerly awaiting whatever treat was inside. Eventually, I ...
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KITCHEN CULTURE Meet the chefs & teams of Ireland’s professional kitchens, with Chef Network The Chef Network community brings together chefs at all levels from all sectors across Ireland. In a Hotel & Restaurant Times regular column we meet some members and hear from them what inspires and motivates them, their career challenges and opportunities, and how they believe we can improve the industry. In this edition we meet Barry Ralph, Chef-Proprietor at House of Plates Why did you become a Chef? I’ve always been interested in food from a young age. I’ve always dabbled in the kitchen and in the garden. When ...
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Entering cooking competitions was never a difficult decision for me, it was something I was always instinctively drawn to. I first began cooking competitively in secondary school, when my home economics teacher encouraged me to participate in a couple of competitions. I quickly realised how much I enjoyed cooking under pressure and in an environment different than that of my class or home. Cooking where the stakes are raised allows you to focus intently on the task at hand and gets you in the zone. Last year I decided to enter the Euro-Toques Ireland Young Chef of the Year competition. I felt I was talented enough and motivated enough to potentially ...
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