The national cuisine of Ireland is quite nourishing and tasty, but the dishes are simple and not particularly sophisticated. This is conditioned by the climatic conditions in which people are used to survive. Local recipes are based on dairy and meat products, as well as seafood.
Features of Irish cuisine
During cooking, locals prefer to use natural products, which are considered some of the most environmentally friendly on the planet. Here even the simplest dishes are cooked in a special way, and on the table there is always butter and traditional soda bread. Often it is cooked with nuts, eggs and raisins.
The diet of the locals includes seafood caught in the Atlantic Ocean. Here they like to eat lobsters, shrimp, mussels, oysters, and pink salmon. They’re eaten simply – with butter and bread, and washed down with beer. In Ireland, cheese is very popular and used to make traditional dishes, especially cheese varieties such as:
In the old days only the rich could afford such food, whereas peasants ate offal. Traditionally the meat was cooked over a fire or on a spit, with the carcass first coated in clay. Today the national dishes in Ireland are cooked at home, but they try to retain the ancient technology. Locals are very practical and quite often use in their recipes ears, kidneys, tails and tripe.
The most popular national meat meal in Ireland is:
- stew – it is cooked over a small fire with fresh lamb, potatoes, onions, cumin, carrots and parsley;
- cauldron-it is a mixture of sausages, bacon, potatoes, and onions;
- black pudding – is a sausage made of pork skin, sheep’s blood and seasonings, it must be fried and cut into rings;
- Celtic steak – it is made of beef fillet, which is fried on whiskey;
- alster fries – fried sausage, brisket, blood sausage, mushrooms, and eggs.
The vegetable began to be cultivated in Ireland in the mid-16th century, since then the dishes made of potatoes became national and firmly established in the diet of the locals. In the 19th century, crop failures caused the Great Famine, in which the population was reduced by 25%.
In Ireland, the potato is used to make both street food and all sorts of dishes. The root vegetable is served as a side dish and is also included in various recipes. The most delicious dishes are considered:
- Chump – is a mashed potato in which milk, pepper, green onions, butter and salt are added;
- Boksti – these are pancakes made from grated potatoes, flour, soda, and butter, also called “poor man’s food;
- Fish and chips is a fast food dish made with fries and fish;
- koddle – a dish consisting of sliced potatoes, onions, and slices of pork sausage, sometimes barley is added;
- kolkannon – a baked mixture of mashed potatoes, cabbage, onions, and seasonings.
First courses and appetizers
In recent decades the national cuisine of Ireland has undergone some changes, and the first courses began to be cooked with fish and seafood more often. Today many restaurants in Ireland offer salmon, salmon, trout, trout, cod, pike, shrimp and other seafood soup. The locals also like to cook a broth of potatoes, garlic, and onions; then they add cream and whip it up with a blender until you get a puree.
The Irish love to drink beer and have a variety of appetizers to go with it, such as krubins. This dish consists of boiled pig’s feet. They also eat seaweed, which is fried, baked, dried to use as a spice, and even eaten pureed. They enhance the taste of the main dishes and are rich in proteins, vitamins, and various microelements.
Pastries and Desserts
In Ireland, baked goods are a national dish and are especially revered. No sourdough or yeast is used for baking here, and baking soda is added to the dough. This is due to the fact that the island grows soft wheat, which contains a small amount of gluten. During a tour of the country tourists should try:
- barbreak – bread with raisins, sometimes with surprises added to it, such as rings, coins, peas, etc.;
- Gudi – it is pieces of stale bread, which must first be fried until golden crust, and then pour sweet milk with spices, then they are baked in the oven and served with ice cream or chocolate;
- farls – it has the shape of a quarter circle and is made from wheat flour and herbs;
- bram brac is a bread with fruit, usually served with tea;
- Porter Cake is a famous Irish muffin made from the finest flour and dark alcoholic beer.
The locals are very fond of tea; they drink it in large quantities and very often. Traditional Irish coffee is also popular among the native population, and they may add whipped cream and brown sugar to it. Sometimes the drink is mixed with whiskey and then used as a base for various liqueurs. The most famous of these are Carolans and Baileys, served in glasses made of special tempered glass.
Recently in Ireland have become popular old national dishes, though cooked in a new original way. For example, here they have begun to make a drink called mead out of a honey solution, which resembles the recipe for the famous mead. The natives mastered the processes of distillation back in the 5th century and since then have developed many recipes. If you want to try the local liquor, then pay your attention to such types as:
- Eyrist Mist, a liquor that has been made since the 17th century from wild honey, herbs and whiskey;
- Caffris – an Irish ale that tastes like thick beer;
- Guinness is a dark variety of beer, the most famous in the country, on the basis of which all kinds of cocktails are prepared;
- Beamish is a red ale resembling a sweet red wine.
It is very interesting to visit Ireland, and to learn about its original traditions is even more interesting. Going on a fascinating trip, ask about the most unusual customs, many of which are still preserved and used in everyday life.
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What is the national cuisine, traditional dishes and food in Ireland?
10 popular Irish dishes to try
When you go to Ireland, you assume that people there will speak English. That’s the way it is. But when it comes to food, we see the influence of the Irish language, and English-speaking tourists sometimes have to decipher the names on menus.
Here are ten traditional Irish dishes, some easy to decipher and some not.
This is a staple that is always served. The Irish are famous for their butter, and every restaurant will serve you a good chunk of butter, usually along with traditional Irish bread (see below). Butter is also often used for frying and baking.
Butter wouldn’t taste as good without bread. And while regular white bread can be found in many places, soda bread is traditional.
The ingredients of Irish soda bread include flour, baking soda, salt and buttermilk, which contains lactic acid that reacts with the soda to form little bubbles of carbon dioxide. Sometimes soda bread can be made with raisins, eggs, or even nuts.
The tradition of serving potatoes dates back to the time of the famine, when potatoes came to be considered food for the poor. Now it is served as a side dish to almost anything, and it also forms the basis of other, more elaborate dishes. It is worth noting that Irish potatoes are not sweet.
Mushrooms (for breakfast).
Irish breakfast! It is very hearty. If you’re a vegetarian, you can skip the black and white sausage pudding, but the eggs, potato pancakes, potatoes and roasted tomatoes will come in handy.
But for me, the most exquisite dish turned out to be mushrooms. Every establishment cooks them a little differently. Sometimes they are grilled, sometimes in oil, but the best mushrooms I got to try were with basil stuffing.
If you eat meat, this dish is impossible not to try. Traditional Irish stew is made with lamb or lamb and potatoes, carrots, onions and parsley. On cold winter evenings, grab a pot of stew and you won’t be afraid of the cold.
A dish that needs translation. “Colcannon” means “white cabbage” in Irish. This is exactly what the dish consists of: mashed potatoes with leafy or cabbage.
If you’re going for an abundant and inexpensive meal, the choice is already made! Chump, or “paundice,” is similar to colcannon, but comes from the north of Ireland. It consists of creamy mashed potatoes mixed with green onions. It is usually served with meat dishes.
The Irish love potatoes. “Boksti” means “bread for the poor.” These are traditional Irish potato pancakes. Recipes vary throughout the country, but everywhere there are grated raw potatoes that are then served fried. Boksti is served with beef or other meat dishes.
The best way to taste coddle is in Dublin, which is why this dish is sometimes called “Dublin coddle. This dish includes layers of sliced pork sausage as well as potatoes and onions (also sliced).
The traditional version of the dish also includes barley. Irish writer James Joyce once mentioned this dish in one of his works, so it’s definitely worth a try.
Tea, Guinness beer and whiskey
I can’t help but include drinks on the food list. The Irish are famous for their love of tea, but beer and whiskey are also on the list of popular drinks. Guinness beer in particular draws special attention, as there is a museum of this beer in Dublin that is worth a visit.