June has flown by with it’s sunny weather. Until the solstice when the skies opened and it rained for a week. You don’t come to Ireland for the weather! I spent a week in West Cork distributing the book from Cork City, over to Cobh and worked my way along the coast up to Bantry. There’s lovely small bookshops and health food stores in that part of the country. A big thanks to everyone who took the book but a few really stand out. Thanks to David at the Quay Food Company in Kinsale www.quayfood.com It’s a well stocked little shop that dosen’t sell books but David liked it so much he took them and said he would bring them to sell at the tuesday Farmers Market. Also to Matthew at Bandon Books on Howard Court in Bandon who was so impressed that he said he expects it to go far and encouraged me to get national press. I left his shop feeling very energized. Patsy at Ying Yang Health Foods in Skibbereen has a nice big shop full of goodies and Gillian at Hudson’s Whole Foods in Ballydehob makes great coffee and now sells Coming Home To Cook. On to Bantry to Organico www.organico.ie I met Hannah and Rachel, 2 of the 3 sisters who now own the family business. It’s a well stocked shop with a big, airy cafe upstairs. I was hesitant to leave the book on the shelf in the shop. It’s a little book and will easily get lost on a bookshelf. It needs to stand out, and the cover has to be seen! Upon hearing this, Hannah offered to sell it upstairs at the cafe. It is displayd on a shelf at the top of the stairs. I sat and signed them and then had a delicious salad and more good coffee! I spent the night in Carriganimy with Liam and Joan who were busy with the sillage. It’s a huge job involving 7 extra men whom Joan fed for 3 days. I’m always amazed by how hard the whole family works. Karen was there helping out and, of course, Steven, who is just 25, is now a full time farmer. He never stops! If you want to know more about West Cork and where the book is available please join in.
Failte! This is my first posting. My intention is to keep friends, near and abroad, informed of what life is like in Ireland in the summer of 2008. I also want to use it as a kind of “message board” about my cookbook Coming Home To Cook and to post new recipes.
So, in this blog I will give you news of the farmers markets, my travels with the book, food demonstrations, book signings and any other good food news from the Emerald Isle. I’m trying out new recipes and will share those, too. I would love for you to share your experiences with the recipes you’ve tried. So, let’s start there. On Thursdays I sell at the Kilrush Market. I started last week with the cookbook and samples of the Quinoa salad and the hummos and sesame dressing. Everybody wanted to buy the samples! This week I went back with bottles of sesame dressing and honey mustard viniagrette and containers of quinoa and hummos. I sold quite a few. I did the same at the Ennis Market on Friday and the Doolin Market on Saturday. It seems like I’ve created a little niche for myself. The markets are a great way to get the word out about the book and generally good craic. The other vendors are warm and friendly and have been very helpful.
Biddy Hedderman from Carrigaholt sells gorgeous vegetables and plants. She bought the book and told me this, “Last saturday night the boys went off fishing and my daughter Muireann and I baked the chocolate chip cookies. We made a double batch which was 4 trays. They were for a bake sale on Tuesday but were gone by Sunday! What I liked about them was the moist, soft center with the crunchy outside and the recipe was so easy to follow.” I’m off to Cork tomorrow to promote and sell it in the “home” county so I’ll let you know how they like the Sheehan cookbook and Ballyvourney stories with the Carriganima farmer on the cover. Slan, Mary