Serial food blogger Conor Hogan (AKA Belfast Food Blogger) was lucky enough to be invited up to Daniel’s at Tweedies to experience their Italian Cookery School recently. An invite from In The Spotlight Media saw him travel to Parkgate, Co Antrim for a different type of dining experience – the Sugah Gals, weren’t on the list on this occasion, so we’re going to let Conor tell you all about it!
As his usual partner in food crime Laurie was at the new 50 Shades of Grey movie Ma Hogan got to tag along; mother son bonding at its finest.
So this unique cookery school gives you an opportunity to see a Michelin trained chef in action.
On arrival at Daniel’s at Tweedies you are met with the most amazing dining room, think of a converted style barn with a modern twist, tall beams, intimate lighting and local art set the scene. Daniel Harvey, a young and very passionate chef will introduce himself and invite you into his kitchen.
I was just a bit excited about this, I’d never really been in a professional kitchen before. It was fascinating watching a professional chef at work, the ease that he worked at, the organisation of his ingredients and the calmness he had was everything that I am not in the kitchen; I’m more of a Tasmanian devil who can use a blender and cook a decent steak.
Daniel introduced each dish before taking us on a short journey of how to make it, he showed us some tricks of the trade, passed on tips he had picked up and engaged with us at all times – asking us questions, letting us taste the food or explaining the equipment being used, I almost felt like I was helping to flavour the dishes!
So what did we try? Well first up we actually started with the dessert, raspberry panna cotta – we watched how this was made and discussed that beef gelatin was the essential component as that allowed the dessert to set.
Next our starter; a braised beef check ravioli, we watched the fresh pasta being made and even got a go at using the pasta machine which was great fun. After watching Daniel create the dish we then sat down at our banquet table and our first course was served – immediately I could tell the difference between fresh pasta and shop bought, the texture was different, the taste was more delicate and paired with the braised beef check the dish was outstanding. There was a subtle sauce added to the dish; a simple red wine jus just to make it even more appetizing!
So after devouring this we returned to the kitchen, and this time we were shown, step by step; how to make authentic Pasta Carbonara – after all it was an Italian Cookery Class so a Carbonara was a must:
- 2 eggs yolks
- A slice of Parmesan
- Lots of cracked black pepper
- Some freshly made tagliatelle
That’s all you need to make this amazing dish – served with shavings of Parmesan this went down like a treat. Tasty, most definitely moreish and definitely authentic Daniel taught us that cream has no place in an authentic Italian Carbonara, and I certainly didn’t miss it. In a word SCRUMPTIOUS!
So there you have it, add in a beautiful Panna Cotta that had just set, a few glasses of wine and you really do have a wonderful evening out – a great date idea, a perfect birthday present or just a fun night out!
I urge you all to go here, the short trip Parkgate is well worth it. On a final note, the staff on the night were young and attentive, much like their head chef they showed passion for their jobs and that was most definitely felt at Daniel’s at Tweedies.
Daniel’s at Tweedies| 11 Main Street, Parkgate, Templepatrick, BT39 0DG| 02894 439775