In year one of the Covid years, by some miracle the chief taster and I managed to get away for a holiday in Ireland.
We had a wonderful time enjoying the scenery (fabulous) and the food (also fabulous) in Connemara, and then driving down the Wild Atlantic Way. Then we had to drive back to Dublin for the ferry. It was too long to drive all in one day, so the chief taster found an AirBnB along the route, which, he explained, he chose because of the ceilings.
The ceilings at Ash Hill were, indeed, splendid, and so was much else about this unusual Georgian house and its grounds. Our bedroom sported a four-poster, and having just got back from a long, wet walk, I got into it together with a cup of hot tea.
A pile of books and magazines, had been thoughtfully left on the bedside table. On the top was In An Irish House, a compendium of recipes contributed by the chatelaines (and, rarely, male owners) of large Irish country houses, published in 1996.
The chapter on Glenasmole Lodge was donated by Mrs Charles Judd. She explains:
“For about twelve years we have given a luncheon party on the Sunday after the Dublin Horse Show. Tables are spread throughout the main reception rooms. The meal consists always of a buffet of fish – prawns, lobster, crab, bream, turbots and gravadlax. … here is one of the prawn recipes I use.”
It certainly is an elegant dish, fit for such a lavish spread. But because it needs to be served hot I think it works better as either a smart starter; or as a hearty lunch.
I’ve changed the proportions, increasing the prawns and decreasing the eggs. And I’ve added spring onions and mild chorizo. It gets a lot of thumbs up, this recipe!
You can prepare it a few hours beforehand.
Irish Prawns and Eggs
Serves – 6
- 150g/6 oz cooked prawns (go here to find out how to defrost prawns safely and effectively)
- 200 ml/¾ cup plus a generous tablespoon double cream
- Small bunch of parsley
- 80g/⅔ cup grated gruyère
- 100g/4 oz butter, room temperature
- 5 eggs
- 2”/5 cm mild chorizo
- 2 spring onions
- Smoked salt and Urfa pepper flakes
- Defrost the prawns if they are still frozen ((go here to find out how to defrost prawns safely and effectively).
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Hard boil the eggs and chop them small. Put into a medium-sized mixing bowl.
- Snip in the spring onions (including a little of the green), and the parsley.
- Shop the chorizo very small and add to the bowl.
- Mix in the butter.
- Add the seasoning and the cream and mix well.
- Put the lot into an oven-proof dish and scatter over the grated gruyere.
- Bake for twenty minutes, and serve immediately.