Have a Very Dairy Christmas – Clodagh McKenna Launches Exclusive Christmas Recipe Campaign
The National Dairy Council is delighted to announce that it is launching a special Christmas campaign with Irish Chef Clodagh Mckenna. Clodagh has created eight delicious festive recipes using the best of Irish produce, a range of indulgent treats to cook for friends and family this Christmas.
Clodagh says “I have always been passionate about the quality and goodness of Irish dairy and use it regularly in all my recipes and dishes for its delicious flavour and superb taste. The best meals are made from fresh ingredients and dairy is delicious, nutritious and versatile. In Ireland, we are very fortunate to have a wonderful range of dairy produce to choose from and thanks to our tradition of excellence in dairy production, quality comes naturally. The recipes I have created will add that extra special touch of luxury to your Christmas celebrations this year”.
Clodagh’s recipes include a range of delicious ideas to complement your turkey or goose dinner with luxurious side dishes given a special Clodagh Mckenna twist. Start your meal with a rich chicken liver pate with caramelized onions topped with crispy sage lives and grated orange, or a delicious “cheese cloud” farmhouse cheese soufflé or why not be adventurous and make the Irish crab toasts finished with a spicy yogurt topping.
Cauliflower cheese is made extra special with a mature cheddar cheese and a crunchy hazelnut topping. For dessert, there are a delicious range of alternatives to the Christmas pudding including a chocolate pecan trifle with orange blossom cream and a rice pudding flavoured with star anise and orange.
“People always ask me how to avoid stress when entertaining a big crowd at Christmas” says Clodagh. “The key of course is to be well organised, I start writing my menu about a week beforehand, and I balance it with at least two courses that I can make the night before, so that it usually only leaves me with the cocktails, bread and one course to do on the day. I like to start out the meal with sharing plates or boards, this always relaxes my guests, and it’s easy for me to assemble, like my delicious chicken liver pate with caramelized onions, an old classic, and can be made a day or two in advance, or my crab toasts with a drizzle of spiced yogurt. Having good quality ingredients is the key to a delicious tasting supper. I always have Irish dairy in my fridge, nothing compares to the clean pure taste of Irish butter, yogurt, cream and our cheeses! And for my vegetables, I go as direct as I can to getting them from farms, via the farmer’s markets or good vegetable stores, root vegetables are tasting so good at this time of the year”.
Clodagh’s Christmas Entertaining Tips
1. Plan and write up your menu a week in advance
2. Have at two courses that you can make ahead
3. Take the time to create a beautifully laid table the night before, it’s so lovely to sit at a beautiful thoughtful table
4. Bake my simple ‘Rosemary Clodagh’ bread in the morning of your supper, a house filled with fresh bread smells is so welcoming and of course to eat too!
5. Source really good quality ingredients, it makes the creating of delicious dishes very easy.