'Nuff said, just head right this way
Yes indeed, another year has brought with it another Bloom in the Park.
I do think that Bord Bia‘s five-day long festival of gardens and food in the Phoenix Park just keeps getting better and better, though, granted, I might be marginally biased by the fact that this year’s event included a dedicated potato cookery stand (it being a well-established fact that, to make anything better, you just need to add spuds). Ray Moran from Harry’s Bar & Restaurant in Inishowen was on hand to demo a range of potato recipes – including fish cakes, potatoes with pesto and a potato, chorizo and butternut squash ‘risotto’ – all of which can be found in a booklet brought out by Bord Bia and Potato.ie as part of their grand plan to get spuds back onto the Irish dinner agenda (you can download the booklet here).
Ray Moran gets to grips with some spuds at Bloom
I’ll admit that what you will see below was more carefully assembled (to say nothing of being more psychedelic) than my lunchbox usually is, but, in the bento scheme of things, I’m not sure that it counts as being especially kawaii. (If, at this point, you are sporting a blank or quizzical stare, then I should explain that bento refers to a packed meal common in Japanese cuisine and kawaii to the cuteness thereof – and some bentos are, indeed, tremendously cute).
The call to create a bento began (as many things do these days) as a series of exchanges on Twitter, resulting in an invitation from Chef Pandita to take up the bento challenge – a mission that has been variously tagged on Twitter as #bentomadness, #bentocuteness, #badassbento and (my own particular favourite) #halfassbento.
Lunch is served, bento-style
Give me an Irish theme to cook to and, yes, chances are, I’ll give you spuds. There’s also a fair chance (me being me) that they won’t necessarily be the kind of spuds you’re used to. That, I think it’s safe to say, is something you’ve come to expect around here.
Take these potato cups: individual shells made from thinly sliced potato and used to serve, well, anything.
Potato cups with smoked salmon