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Recipe: Culinary Demonstration at Dunbrody House Hotel

Cookery school at Dunbrody

Cookery school at Dunbrody

I was down in the Hook Peninsula in Co. Wexford last week and I have to admit before I left I wasn’t even sure where it was. I associate Wexford with Rosslare and getting the boat to France each summer, but was pleasantly surprised to discover that Hook Peninsula is a lovely place with lots to do and see. I especially loved Hook lighthouse – the oldest lighthouse in Europe no less.

The peninsula kind of feels like an island because it’s fairly small with views of the sea to three sides. I stayed in the fancy Dunbrody Country House Hotel which is owned by Kevin Dundon off the telly, taking in a cookery demonstration which I particularly enjoyed. It was delivered by the very friendly and entertaining Edward Hayden.

The demonstration covered Pea and Smoked Bacon Soup, Multi-seed Scones, Stuffed Pork in Cider and Wholegrain Mustard Gravy and Summer Berry Meringue.  Naturally he made it look ridiculously easy but that was to be expected I suppose. I got to sample each dish and all were very delicious. I heartily recommend a visit to Dunbrody and a cookery class from this chap. Check out the gardens too, they are especially beautiful.

Here is the recipe for the soup he made. The mint is key here, adding a really cleansing summer flavour.

Pea and Smoked Bacon Soup


  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium sized potato, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 75g smoked bacon
  • 450g frozen peas
  • 700ml chicken stock
  • 110ml cream
  • Seasoning


  1. Add a drizzle of oil to a saucepan and saute the chopped onion, bacon, garlic and potato until lightly browned
  2. Add in the frozen peas to the pot and mix until they have defrosted. Add a pinch of salt and a crack of pepper at this stage.
  3. Next pour in the chicken stock and cream and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 12-15 minutes until the peas have softened, yet still retain their colour.
  4. Transfer to a food processor and blitz in batches until the soup is smooth. Return the mixture to a clean saucepan, check the seasoning and reheat gently.


  1. We did the course last year and enjoyed it. Edward Entertains! Eh! Glad to see he continues to make the best impressions on visitors.

    BTW – is the giant pot bellied pig still munching on carrots borrowed by guests from the kitchens?

  2. I didn’t spot a pig hanging about. Shame I like to mix with pigs. There was a number of rabbits on the loose, maybe they ate all they carrots.

  3. I’ve been on a course with Edward, and I have to say he’s fantastic. Not only is he a great teacher, but the courses are very entertaining. I can recommend him & the courses highly!

  4. At what point do you add mint Rercs, is it at the end as a garnish?

  5. Can also thoroughly recommend a course in Dunbrody – Edward is truly the icing on the cake – a hoot!