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We are friends who love making simple food look beautiful. We hope our recipes will inspire you to get into the kitchen this season. Aoife McElwain works in front of the camera writing the recipes and styling the food, while Mark Duggan works behind the camera to make sure it all looks as delicious as possible. We work with editors such as Killian Broderick and music supervisors like Nialler9 to make sure that our finished videos look and sound as smart as possible. We work with brands like Glenisk and Folláin to help them create delicious video content for their online platforms. When we're not making videos, we write a weekly column called Speedy Suppers on Thursdays in The Irish Independent. Aoife writes the recipes and styles the food while Mark takes the photographs.  
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20 Jun roast tomatoes + tomato ketchup

_MG_1907The tomatoes that grew in Irish allotments last year will no doubt become the stuff of legend. They were enormous, flavoursome beasts (nostalgia may be encouraging slight exaggeration here) thanks to our prolonged spell of bursting sunshine. This year may not produce such a bounty but we’re still looking forward to Irish tomato season which should reach its peak in the middle of the summer and stay with us until early autumn. We love growers like The McNally Family Farm whose stall in Dublin’s Temple Bar Food Market on a Saturday is a treasure trove of Irish and organic ingredients, especially during the summer months. Keep an eye on their facebook page to find out when their tomatoes have landed.

 

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Tomato Ketchup

It takes a considerable amount of tomatoes to yield a little ketchup, especially if you’re expecting the thick consistency of our favourite brands. By all means, reduce it way down until you get that familiar texture but a thinner consistency is just as tasty and goes much further at a BBQ. This recipe is simple but does require a few hours of cooking time.

Ingredients

1.5kg of your finest tomatoes

1 head of garlic

Salt

Pepper

6 fresh thyme sprigs

2 tablespoons of olive oil

To make your ketchup

1/2 teaspoon of all spice

1/2 teaspoon of coriander

1 cinnamon stick

1 tablespoon of Sriracha (a spicy Thai sauce available in specialist shops – this is optional but adds a lovely kick)

50g of brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon of celery salt (adds a distinct flavour but you can substitute with regular salt too)

Black pepper

50ml of white wine vinegar

Method

Pre-heat your oven to 180c/160c fan/Gas Mark 4.

Slice the tomatoes in half and arrange them in a very large roasting dish, trying not to overlap them. Slice the head of garlic in two and scatter the cloves, unpeeled, in and around the tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, add the thyme leaves to the dish and drizzle the olive oil over the tomatoes. Roast for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Put a large sieve over a large saucepan. Squeeze about 3 tomatoes at a time through the sieve so that their juice flows into the saucepan. The leftover pulp, skins and seeds are still full of flavour and make a lovely snack on toast with garlic and balsamic vinegar so don’t throw them away! Your tomatoes should give you about half a litre of smooth sauce.

Add the all spice, coriander, cinnamon stick, Sriracha, brown sugar, celery salt, black pepper and white wine vinegar and stir well. Bring to a gentle simmer and allow to cook for 1 hour until the sauce is glossy and reduced. It will still be quite thin at this stage but it’s ready to serve when you are. You can continue to reduce it by bubbling away over a steady heat until you’re happy with the texture.

We find our tomato ketchup tastes best with spicy Merquez sausages cooked on the BBQ, served in a toasted roll and eaten outside.

 

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Nigel’s Roast Tomatoes (serves 4, easily doubled)

As we’ve gotten more confident in the kitchen, we’ve taken to adapting some of our favourite cooks’ recipes. These roast tomatoes are an adaptation of a Nigel Slater classic. He adds anchovies (delicious but not everyone’s cup of tea) and uses a different method for putting it all together. It’s been a staple on our summer table ever since we came across it and works beautifully as a side dish to meat, fish or as part of a vegetarian spread.

Ingredients

6 to 8 tomatoes (try to get a few different varieties and colours if you can)

1 head of garlic (we know this is quite a lot but we love garlic – feel free to reduce this by half if you have a hot date after dinner!)

3 sprig of fresh thyme

2 heaped tablespoons of breadcrumbs

Salt

Pepper

2 to 3 tablespoons of olive oil

Method

Pre-heat your oven to 180c/160c fan/Gas Mark 4.

Slice your tomatoes in half and arrange in a roasting dish. Slice the head of garlic in half and place the root half in among the tomatoes, scattering the loose cloves unpeeled around the tomatoes. Add the thyme leaves to the dish and scatter the breadcrumbs on top of the tomatoes. Add a good pinch of salt and pepper. Finally, drizzle the lot with the olive oil, making sure the breadcrumbs get a good coating of oil.

Roast in the oven for 35 to 45 minutes, until the breadcrumbs are golden and the tomatoes are oozing with loveliness. These taste great straight out of the oven but are also delicious served cold stuffed in a sandwich.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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