TV chef Rory Allen’s back... with crafts also on menu

How To Cook Well with Rory O'Connell returns to our screens this week for a sixth run
TV chef Rory Allen’s back... with crafts also on menu

Esther Gerrard and Edward Coveney of Cork craft company Elements of Action.

YOU can’t keep a good man — or a good chef — down, and hot on the heels of his last series, How To Cook Well With Rory O’Connell returns for a sixth run on RTÉ1 on Monday, April 26 at 7.30pm.

As ever, the Corkman will aim to increase the home cook’s skills, confidence and repertoire of recipes, while giving familiar ingredients an imaginative twist.

The format of the new eight-part series has also been given an imaginative twist, as the host takes the opportunity to highlight the skills of Irish craftspeople whose talents help make food look as delicious and special as it tastes.

Rory explains: “Having gone to the effort of creating good food, I feel it’s worth taking the trouble to serve it with equal care.

“There is an exciting new generation of craftsmen and women in Ireland creating beautiful objects for the table — ceramic plates, linen napkins, brass candlestick holders, handwoven baskets, pottery, carved wooden spoons, handmade chef’s knives and beeswax candles. Each of these objects adds something extra to the dining experience, making the meal more than just the food on the plate.

“I’m delighted to be able to showcase the work of eight of my favourite craftspeople.”

In episode one, Rory prepares Gratin of Goat’s Cheese with Sundried Tomato Oil, Baguette Wafers and a Leaf Salad, followed by Chicken with Red Lentils, Turmeric and Coriander, served with rice and peas. He also makes a side dish of Onion Thayir Pachadi (Raita) and Poppadoms. Dessert is Pistachio Cake with Mango and Lime.

The first of his new weekly craft segments takes us to Cloyne in East Cork, and highlights the talents of Elements of Action. Brass candleholders and napkin rings are among the bespoke furniture and gifts handcrafted by Elements of Action partners Edward Coveney and Esther Gerrard.

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