Jalan-jalan, Makan-makan @ Dublin

Flew over to the capital of the Leprechauns to say hello to a bunch of med kids last weekend. Ended up spending almost half my time there slaving in the kitchen helping out with my friend’s housewarming party.

Rolling-rolling vegetable rolls. Made almost 40 of these. Used the mixed vegetables for stir-fry from Tesco, tossed with a little sesame oil and soy sauce before rolling them into thawed frozen spring roll wrappers (available in almost all oriental food stores). The rolls were then baked to crispy perfection. Stayed crisp longer than if they have been deep fried.

This is the messiest chocolate cake I have ever made. Borrowed friend’s spring-form cake pan only to find the batter leaking between the base and the sides. Poured the batter back into the mixing bowl. Wrapped the base with foil, hoping to seal the gap between the edges, batter still leaked. By this time, the sink, the counter top, even the wash machine had chocolate batter everywhere. Batter poured back into bowl. Fully wrapped the external area of the cake pan with foil and poured the batter back into the cake pan. When we placed the cake pan into the oven, we realised the oven wasn’t hot althought it has been turned on. So the oven had to be restarted
again and the batter in the cake pan had to wait a little while longer before being baked.

It took about two hours for the chocolate cake to be fully baked because the oven temperature was lower than the numbers you turned it into on the knob.  Meanwhile, I heated the double cream and poured over chocolate bits in a bowl. Let it cool and popped into the fridge to set before covering the cooled chocolate cake with it. It was just short of butter and a yolk to make a proper truffle, but I called it truffle anyway. Ganache is when you use the melted chocolate in double cream directly – it will result in a shiny, chocolatey coverage.

The lazy cheesecake. This was made to help my friend use up her half-hearted attempt to making black forest filling and another serving of glazed cherries. Crushed Tesco super-hard ginger cookies, melted butter added to it before pressed to the bottom of a cake tin to form the base. Layer the cherries on top of the base. Top off with lightly sweetened Mascarpone cheese. Chocolate curl decoration optional. That was to help finish off my friend’s left over chocolate curls as well.












Apart from all that cooking, I managed to cover pretty much all the bases in Dublin. We went pub-hopping from one full pub to another. Irish music sounds refreshing after all the pop music you hear everywhere else.

There was this guy on the streets, offering a 30 euro reward to anyone who manage to cycle in a straight line on his kooky bicycle. You pay 4 euros for three tries. The bicycle was set in such a way that the direction the tyre turns is opposite to the direction to you turn the handle bar. Being a little tipsy could be a factor, no-one else managed to cycle his bike for the period of time we stood watching. He made it look so easy!

Simply loved the graffiti.

I must have spent about 20 euros at Butler’s in two days. On my first visit to the chocolate store, I had their cookie hot chocolate – Butler’s hot chocolate with two Oreos in it, and a coconut macaroon. The second trip was while waiting for my return flight at the airport, I sat in the cafe sipping the hot chocolate (but minus the cookies) and tried their chocolate cake. The hot chocolate was as good as ever, but the cake was a disappointment. The top chocolate layer was too hard, and the cake layer was not chocolatey at all.

Crashed one of the second-year lectures before I left for the city centre and then the airport. I even took notes. Locomotor Biology – my first ever medicine course lecture. 😉

Loved the vibe of the city. There was even a rainbow on my last day there.

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