This just happens to be the end of my THIRD week here at The Ballymaloe Cookery School. Trying to stay with my plan to write every week has failed, however it is possible that I will catch up soon and be current. So decided to just go ahead and share just a little about week two. Personally, there just wouldn’t be enough time for me to share everything that has been taught in only this very short period of time. But in week two there were a couple of demonstrations that stood out. …
Starting with Jointing a Chicken….in the states I always just said cutting up a Chicken…but when in Ireland one might as well just go with their words. During this demonstration it was so much more than just cutting up the Chicken or Jointing it! We were shown in the demonstration how to use EVERY ounce of that chicken and if we would have had the head and feet they would have found a use for those also.
We were taught the value of rendering the chicken fat and storing it for use at a later time ( Just imagine giving chicken fat value!). The giblets, all but the liver, were put into the stock pot and the liver used for chicken liver pate, which is sold in the little Ballymaloe Shop. (We also made Chicken Liver Pate in week three. ..really yummy).
Back to jointing….the skin that was removed from the chicken were stretched out onto a wire rack and baked until crispy and served with a lovely dipping sauce. (see photo below) The taste of these little morsels reminded me of skinny Pork Rinds, but supposedly these little morsels are making their way back into restaurants as a nice starter….at a nice price.
All of the bones went directly into the stockpot, no passing GO or going to JAIL, just making great stock for days to come. The legs, thighs and breasts we put into three different chicken dish . The legs and thighs were used for Spiced Chicken Leg and Thigh Recipe. My favorites recipes were Chicken Breast with Tarragon and Chicken Breast with Mushrooms and Ginger. Delicious sauces!!
The chicken legs were shortened for appearance and turned into Spiced Chicken Legs.
Part of the wings went into the stockpot as well and the little legs were used as appetizers….after almost turning them inside out exposing the bone, which left a nice little handle to dip into the Sweet Chili Sauce.
Can you believe the number of meals from just one Organic Free Range Chicken!
Next day was all about dairy and it’s source…….and the many different types of dairy product that are made from the daily milk.
THERE ARE SIX JERSEY COWS HERE ON THE FARM (I BELIEVE THAT IS RIGHT). SOMETIME IT SEEMS LIKE THERE ARE MANY MORE WITH THE AMOUNT OF MILK THAT IS PRODUCED HERE DAILY.
BELOW A PORTION OF THE MILK IS SEPARATED TO MAKE JERSEY CREAM FOR OUR COFFEE.
PLUS REALLY FRESH BUTTER MADE IN THE MORNING AND SERVED WITH LUNCH.
FARMHOUSE CHEESE IS ALSO MADE HERE AND THE TECHNIQUE TAUGHT TO THE STUDENTS WHO ARE WILLING TO TURN THEIR CHEESE OFTEN AND DO THE OTHER MANY STEPS REQUIRED FOR THEIR CHEESE OVER THE NEXT MONTHS. SHOULD BE A VERY NICE CHEESE BY THE TIME WE LEAVE. NONE OF THIS CHEESE THAT IS MADE HERE IS SOLD BUT USED IN THE SCHOOL.
YOGURT AND LABNEH, A SOFT YOGURT CHEESE ARE ALSO MADE FROM THE JERSEY MILK. HERE FRUIT WAS ADDED AND STORED IN THESE CUTE LITTLE MIKE JUGS. THEY HAVE BECOME A QUICK AND HEALTHY BREAKFAST WHILE HERE, ALONG WITH A PIECE OFBALLYMALOE BROWN YEAST BREAD OR SODA BREAD!
EVEN THE PIGS ENJOY WHEY! AREN’T THEY SO CUTE AND GETTING BIGGER EVERYDAY!