Siobhán Keogh's Kitchen: Mushrooms, Spinach & Gubeen on ToastIt looks like a lot of us are baking and trying out new, simple and fresh dishes in this unprecedented time of lockdown. A bit of therapy, perhaps. We thought it a good idea to check in on Siobhán Keogh, matriarch and founding partner of Wines Direct. It is well documented that she is a master in the kitchen and of course, an expert at pairing anything with good wine. Usually, Spring would find her dusting off the golf clubs, but today, like many others in the country, she can be found self isolating and cooking. We rang Siobhán after a new routine of daily walks to the lake to check in on a pair of swans (while social distancing) and ask if she could share with us a favourite Easter or Spring brunch staple. She quickly had more than one at the ready and many a variation of breakfast recipes from one of her favourite Chefs, Aussie Bill Granger. When she and Paddy were in Australia visiting winemakers to source Australian wine to bring back to Ireland; they fell in love with Bill Granger (the man and his food) and enjoyed a number of memorable breakfasts at his restaurant.
Mushrooms, Spinach & Gubeen on Toast
Bill Granger ?It seemed fitting to choose a recipe utilizing something that Ireland is eating a lot of recently -- bread. There is a calming effect from partaking of freshly baked bread. And even more therapeutic is adding some Irish cheese to the mix (Siobhán's spin on the recipe). Granger's original recipe called for Taleggio but Siobhán's adaptation substitutes Gubeen. Gubeen Farmhouse Cheese is a surface ripened, semi-soft, cow's milk cheese with a pink and white rind. The flavours are creamy with matching profiles of of mushroom and nutty aftertastes and the way it melts over the toast is perfection. (We love it so much at Wines Direct we added it to the stock in our Mullingar HQ location). 8 large Portabello Mushrooms 1 tablespoon roughly chopped thyme 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil juice of lemon 1 large clove garlic, cut into 8 slivers 200 g (6 1/2 oz) baby spinach, washed Slices of Irish Gubeen Farmhouse Cheese (to taste) 4 thick slices of toast 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F). Place the mushrooms in a roasting tin. Mix thyme, olive oil, and lemon juice together and pour over the mushrooms. Place a slice of garlic on each mushroom and bake the mushrooms for 10 minutes in the oven. Meanwhile, place the spinach (undried with water clinging to the leaves) in a frying pan over medium heat and turn with a spatula until wilted. Remove the mushrooms from the oven. Top each mushroom with a little spinach and some sliced Gubeen. Return to the oven for 5-6 minutes, until the cheese has melted. Place 2 mushrooms on each slice of toast. Drizzle with pan juices and balsamic vinegar. Serves 4.
"We all Need a Lift!"After Siobhán sent her recipe, she quickly followed up with a most critical P.S.
"Don't forget the most important part of Easter breakfast -- Fresh orange juice and bubbles. We all need a lift! Bubbles like Champagne, Prosecco or Cava. And for those like myself who are self-isolating -- don’t forget Charpentier do half bottles! I have mine. Kind Regards, Siobhán"