Afternoon Tea: The Merrion Hotel

You may know the head pastry chef of the Merrion Hotel Paul Kelly, from the Great Irish Bake Off or indeed from many other TV appearances.  I know him through the annual Goodalls Best Scone competition.  He is, as my father might say, a ‘lovely chap”.  He is, in my opinion, a supreme artist and … Continue reading

Bloom 2015 – what can I say….?

Bloom 2015 has come and gone.  Five days.  Five days that were probably some of the best of my life.  In past years I have visited Bloom as a “tourist” or as a guest of Bord Bia. This year was completely different.  This year I had my own garden to launch the eagerly awaited first … Continue reading

Freddy Buttons at Bloom 2015

Freddy Buttons is here. The books are printed. This week they will make their way into bookstores nationwide. They are now available online at http://www.freddybuttons.com . Yes, Freddy Buttons has arrived. And the culmination of this project is the Freddy Buttons Show Garden which will be revealed this weekend at Bloom 2015 in the Phoenix Park.  Sponsored by Glenisk, the … Continue reading

The Best Irish Scone – the search is on…

Where’s the home of Ireland’s Best Scone? – Goodall’s and Odlums join forces in search for Ireland’s best scone- NOW an annual celebration in the Irish foodie calendar, once again, the search is on for ‘Ireland’s Best Scone’. This year Goodall’s and Odlums, two mainstays in Irish baking, are appealing for the public to nominate … Continue reading

My “Irish” French Onion Soup

When you want to use a glut of  onions for soup you think French Onion Soup right?  Well I do anyway – caramelised onions with a hint of wine in a delicious beef stock topped with rich cheesy Gruyére croutons.  Heaven in a bowl……. But what about an Irish version?  What if you substituted the wine … Continue reading

Wild Damson Syrup

Armed with baskets and bags, Ruth and I took off to a neighbour’s farm (with their permission) the other evening.  We returned laden with blackberries, cooking apples and damsons. We left behind the rosehips and sloes for now until the first frost has arrived, and the quince are not quite ripe yet either (haws are … Continue reading

2014 Irish Blog Awards

Dear Readers Back in July I was delighted to have “Fiona Dillon Writes” nominated in the 2014 Irish Blog Awards and of course I was even more delighted to be then shortlisted in four categories in August.  Imagine how I feel today to discover that I am now a finalist in all four categories!   The four … Continue reading

Chickens in Schools

You may recall back in June I announced my collaboration with the South East branch of Slow Food Ireland when we launched a competition for national schools in the SouthEast, with the winners receiving a chicken coop, chickens and all the bits and bobs required to get them set up as poultry keepers.  Well since then the … Continue reading

Farewell Sweet Summer

It’s the last week of August. The younger children are back to school and the rain hasn’t stopped falling.  In fact, it has pretty much been raining non stop since last Sunday morning. Now I usually can’t remember what the weather was like yesterday, never mind last Sunday morning, but there’s a reason. You see, … Continue reading