Salad of new potatoes and smoked salmon with a dill and mustard dressing
A great idea for an 'all in one' lunch.
750g of small new potatoes, cooked and chilled (you could also use leftover potatoes for this ); 225g smoked salmon, cut into thin strips.
Dressing — two teaspoons of muscovado sugar (if you can’t get muscovado, use a good quality dark brown sugar ); one teaspoon of fresh lemon juice; two teaspoons of Dijon mustard; one teaspoon of olive oil; one heaped tablespoon of mayonnaise; two heaped tablespoons of finely chopped fresh dill (or four teaspoons of dried dill ); sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Whisk the muscovado sugar and lemon juice together until the sugar has dissolved; add the mustard, oil, and mayonnaise, whisking all the time; finally, add the fresh dill, season with a pinch of sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Whisk again. If you find it too runny, add a little more mayonnaise. This sauce can be kept for a week in the fridge and actually tastes even better a day old, as it allows the dill to penetrate the sauce even more.
Toss the potatoes, salmon strips and dressing together and serve with a green salad.
French toast with caramelised plums
Great dessert or brunch dish
Four eggs; 125ml of milk; eight slices of bread (brioche if possible ); a little butter for cooking.
To serve — eight ripe plums, halved and stoned; two tablespoons of sugar and maple syrup.
Mix the eggs and milk together then pour the mixture into a shallow dish. Soak the bread in the mixture for a few minutes. Heat a large pan, add a little butter and cook the French toast until golden on both sides. Heat another pan, dip the plums into the sugar then place cut side down on the hot pan and allow the sugar to caramelise but don’t let it burn! When all the plums are ready serve with the French toast and maple syrup.
Rhubarb tart with whiskey cream
Rhubarb grows very easily in Ireland and has always been a staple of country gardens. The whiskey sauce lifts this pretty dessert from its more usual everyday role.
350g of prepared puff pastry; 450g of rhubarb, washed and thinly sliced; 150g of melted butter; 150g of caster sugar; 250ml of cream; 100g of caster sugar and a dash of Irish whiskey.
Preheat a moderate oven, Gas Mark 4, 180°C (350°F ). Roll the pastry out to make four 10cm diameter discs, then pleat the pastry all round the edge. Carefully arrange the sliced rhubarb on top of each pastry disc, making sure there are no gaps, then brush with the melted butter and sprinkle the sugar over. Cook in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. To make the sauce, whip the cream then whisk in the sugar and whiskey. When the rhubarb is tender and nicely caramelised on top, serve on heated plates with the whiskey cream and a sprig of fresh mint to garnish.