It’s a common misconception that Ireland is not a country of foodies! The Emerald Isle is actually full of products with incomparable flavors! So, today we are bringing you to discover Irish gastronomy and 5 delicious dishes made from Irish food.
Ireland has no shortage of small local producers or quality fresh produce! In recent years, we have witnessed a real promotion of these products, whether for sale in markets or in shops. They are also sublimated on Irish tables to the delight of locals and passing tourists!
Here are 5 specialties of Irish gastronomy that will make your taste buds twitch!
1. Irish smoked salmon
Ireland is renowned worldwide for its salmon quality, from the blue waters and crystal clear Atlantic Ocean.
Wild, organic, or farmed, there is something for everyone! Salmon are sourced primarily from the west coast of Ireland – Connemara, Counties Clare and Mayo – and the Kenmare region of Kerry.
Smoking fish is a real skill in Ireland! The techniques in terms of smoking are numerous, and the recipes varied. So many flavors which give Irish smoked salmon all its originality and which have earned it worldwide fame!
Want to visit a salmon den in Ireland? Do not hesitate to go to one of the smokehouses below:
Burren Smokehouse, Lisdoonvarna
Connemara Smokehouse, Ballyconneelly
Their website also offers you the chance to buy Irish smoked salmon online !
2. Irish oysters
Oysters from the West Coast of Ireland are renowned the world over for their quality and taste!
The month of September gives the kickoff of the oyster season across the country. The Galway Oyster Festival is an ode to Irish gastronomy! For several days you can feast on the best Irish oysters in the whole city. It is also the place where the world oyster opening championship takes place.
Oysters are an integral part of Irish cuisine. Traditionally eaten with brown bread and a pint of Guinness, they are extremely tasty!
From Donegal to County Clare, via Galway or Achill Island, discover the many producers established along the Wild Atlantic Way at: https://www.wildatlanticway.com/highlights/
Read also: 10 unusual things to do on the Wild Atlantic Way
3. Irish lamb
Renowned for its green pastures, Ireland has a large number of lamb farms. Donegal and Connemara are the regions with the most herds.
The quality of their meat – recognized throughout the world – comes from the way of breeding: the animals are raised in complete freedom and in the open air, and benefit from the fatty grass of the Irish hills.
Irish lamb is a very healthy meat of great taste and nutritional quality. It can be eaten absolutely everywhere: in restaurants, pubs – with or without mint sauce! – and is part of traditional Irish cuisine.
Do you want to meet breeders, see sheepdogs in action and get as close as possible to the herd? Several farms open their doors to you:
Killary sheep farm – in Connemara
4. Irish beef
Beef also flourishes on Irish lands. And the delicacy of its meat has won over the best European tables!
The main beef farming area is concentrated in central Ireland. Over 80% of its diet is made from the beautiful grass of the Irish pastures, and its breeding is one of the most respectful in Europe.
Irish Cattle are reared in the great outdoors, over vast expanses, which guarantees them a peaceful and stress-free life. And because it is grass fed, Irish beef is rich in Omega-3, in beta-carotene and Vitamin E.
On the menu of every pub and restaurant in Ireland, you will love this tender and tasty meat !
5. Irish cheeses
Surprised? Yes, Ireland is also a cheese producing country! And having tasted almost all of them, I can assure you that they are pretty good!
The cheese-making tradition in Ireland experienced a revival from the 1970s. Goat to cow to sheep cheese, everyone will find happiness! Some of the local specialties: Gubbeen, Milleens, Ardrahan, Durrus, St. Tola, Cashel Blue, Cooleney or Dubliner.
Each cheese is associated with a producer, and not with an area such as in France. Each cheese therefore has its own family history!
On occasion, stop in the local cheese factories for a little visit and tasting :
St Tola Irish goat cheese – voted best Irish cheese of the year 2017
Durrus Farmhouse cheese located on the Sheep’s Head Way