Irish food doesn’t often get the acclaim it deserves. Irish celebrity chef Rachel Allen is changing that little by little all over the world, literally. She was in Dubai last week and in NYC this week, and her fan base continues to grow like wild fire. It’s because she presents Irish cuisine with a breath of fresh air, including modern takes on traditional dishes. St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner so it’s the perfect time you to take another look at what she’s dishing in her latest book, Rachel’s Irish Family Food.
I’m Irish — well, as Irish as a fourth generation American girl can be. We grew up eating Irish family favorites like boiled ham and cabbage, pork and sauerkraut with dumplings, and lots of mashed potatoes, which I still love. While pork is a huge part of the Irish diet, this books shows that so is fresh seafood, like hot buttered lobster, trout, salmon and mackerel — not to mention loads of shellfish.
I had to chuckle that the first section of the book is titled “Soups and Light Meals.” With ingredients like heavy cream, melted butter, mayonnaise, cream cheese, crème fraiche along with elements like Hollandaise and fried chicken livers, the recipes in the section aren’t exactly what most of us would categorize as “light.” No wonder I gained 10 pounds when visiting Ireland. I was loving the light foods!
Even with my own family favorites, I’ve adopted Rachel’s delicious homemade pork sausages with colcannon and her brown soda bread into my family’s new favorite Irish recipes.
• Who wrote it: Rachel Allen
• Who published it: Harper Collins
• Number of recipes: 120
• Recipes for right now: Homemade Pork Sausages with Colcannon and Applesauce, Crumbed Bacon chops with Sweet Whiskey Sauce, Irish Coffee Cups, Brown Soda Bread, Cheesy Soda Scones, Whole- Grain Shortbread
• Other highlights: Rachel also includes information and beautiful images from the four provinces of Ireland, including the history and the food culture from each. The dessert section also includes such gorgeous images you’ll want to make all of them, now.
• Who would enjoy this book? Of course anyone who is Irish would love this book but also anyone interested in seeing modern and traditional Irish cuisine that reaches far beyond boiled ham and cabbage.
Find the book at your local library, independent bookstore, or Amazon: Rachel’s Irish Family Food by Rachel Allen
• Visit the author's website: Rachel Allen
- Rachel Allen on The Kitchn: Irish Culinary Celeb Rachel Allen's Kitchen
- A Cocktail Using Rachel's Homemade Elderflower Liqueur: Traditional Elder-Fashioned Cocktail
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.
(Images: Maureen Petrosky)