The latest stop Grow It Cook It roadshow was the Twin Towns Community Garden on the 22nd of September. All-Ireland fever was in the air, with flags, bunting and GAA tops everywhere, a real positive vibe in the town..as I write this the match is not-yet started...so how Donegal get on is unknown....but I do know that everyone loved Chef Ian Orrs cooking....every plate was near licked clean. Ian focused on seasonal produce, all from the garden to make super tasty dishes...
The Grow it Cook It event was part of the wider celebrations to mark the official opening of the Twin Towns Community Garden, the ribbon cutting being performed by Community Garden supporter Mary Scally, shown here with Tara Rowan, who is the brains behind the whole event. You can follow the garden on their Facebook page here
After the cooking we focused on what to do now in the kitchen garden. We planted crops of Kale, Cabbage, Savoy, Leeks, Cauliflower, Broccoli and Spinach. Giving lots of advice on Feeding, pest prevention, harvesting and more...Folks were invited to get stuck-in, helping to plant nearly 300 plants, what a great way to create a great legacy from the day in the form of a great spring harvest in the garden!
The Latest Stop for the Grow it Cook it Roadshow was the Fountain Community Garden, again head chef from Browns Restaurant Ian Orr was the man with the hand on the pans and rustled up some mighty dishes using fresh produce from the Fountain Community Garden.
on the day we offered advice on how to grow the best herbs, using the fountain community herb pots as good examples, offered advice on seed gathering, crop rotation and much more
and every dish from the Lamb, Steak and the Salmon ended up like this...devoured by the folks in the garden...is there a better way to spend a few hours??
I was fortunate enough to get an invite to the Springtown Activity and Horticultural groups 'Grow it Cook it' day in the Ballymagroarty Communtiy Garden a week past Monday....the group had arranged a special cookery show-case to unveil their new polytunnel for the garden area. The Polytunnel and group are generously sponsored by CityCabs...might seem strange a taxi company sponsoring a horticultural group...but its all local...local taxis, local group, local produce...all good.
The Springtown activity and Horticultural group were fortunate enough to be able to get the multi award winning Ian Orr from Browns Restaurant to come and cook al-Fresco in the Community Garden, Ian brought his mobile kitchen down and cooked up Salmons, Steaks and the likes with loads of fresh herbs, salads and veg from the garden itself...all under close scrutiny from the Ballymagroarty locals....
Ian is no stranger to the Ballymac Community Garden, he's been a visitor to the garden before, getting advice from the group on how to grow herbs and salads.....and commented on the selction of produce the group had, especially the Swiss Chard, Sprouting Broccoli, Kale and Bean selections.
and i'm sure this selection of goodies was tranformed into something amazing in Browns Restaurant that night!
now at the start of the demo folks were sitting down watching.....but as the flavours kicked up the folks stood up and packed over to see the goings on up-close....and to get a taste at the end of each dish Ian cooked....first come first served when it comes to sampling lol
and to give a perspective to the transformation here....this pic is the site of the ballymagroarty community garden last September....a dumping ground unused by anyone....transformed into the garden it is today...a place able to create the buzz and enthusiasm of this type of 'Grow it cook it', creating positive images and health messages to the entire community....
to help unveil the polytunnel Brenda Stevenson from Derry City Council came along....and to add to the buzz and the atmosphere Felix Healy brought the outside broadcast unit from Drive105 along and made the day extra special for everyone.
Gardening on Radio Foyle
A summary of each weeks gardening on Mark Patterson Show and beyond