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Friday, July 29, 2011

Blogging is harder than I thought!

Good Morning!
Like everyone else, I have my little morning routine before I head to the cafe...It usually starts out with, turning the kettle on to make a pot of coffee...and then heading over to the computer to check my email, facebook and of late, the stats on the Diva blog...just found this option recently and found out we have a reader in Latvia...and the Phillippines! Then I kind of take a few minutes to check out info on the web...finish my cup of coffee(by this time two cups) grab some breakfast, get dressed and out the door...

So, this morning I have been thinking about business and how last year the blog was started...And I thought...this blogging is harder than I's like a full time job! And there are people out there going really far with this whole thing...cook books, Tv shows.. I have made a decision to try and blog 2-3 times a week, with photos and more recipes! Feedback would be great...what would you like to read? What do you like about the Diva blog.... In the meantime i can only aspire to be as good as the blog listed below... I have also included a photo of our potato loaf toasted with a lovely ripe tomato and some sea salt that I brought back from Mexico!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Tonight's menu...

Just a quick word on tonights menu...I have added a few new items....I am just going to say that the lamb shanks are super divine! They are braised in a tomato white wine sauce spiked with gin and kalamata olives...I was salivating after I tested the sauce...and, seeing how we are using gin in the lamb, I decided to contine with the boozy theme and serve a bloody mary tomato salad with rare flank steak...Blood mary? you ask...yes, tasty as baby tomatoes macerated with green olives, horseradish, celery, red onion and a dash of tobasco! off the charts good!! that is piled on top of rare flank steak slices...soooo good...will post photos tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Delicious brekkie in a hurry!

ere is a quick breakfast that is quite tasty...Sautee some thinly sliced onions, chorizo(cured or not) a little garlic, some cherry tomatoes and few fried eggs! you can grate a little cheddar on top if you like...I also think a drizzle of pesto would be tasty too :)


Sunday, July 24, 2011

Cake prices and a little perspective

Summer Fruit Sponge Cake with Cream and Garden Herbs

today is sunday and i decided to bake a quick cake at home, (yes i bake at home on my days off! im a nerd) im going to a barbecue this afternoon in courtmacsherry. and as i left the shop with my ingredients in hand, i got to thinking. gosh i just spent 20 euro! then i was thinking about how some people scoff at cake prices in the bakery, "oh, this is too dear, i bake at home." or "i can buy a pack of fairy cakes in the shop for 3 euro! these are 2.50 each!"
so, this cake, sold in the bakery would come in around 25 - 30 euro depending on seasonality.
considering what i bought in the shop and the time to make it this is a bargain. thats not including having to pay rates, bills and rent!

my shopping list:
flour 1.90
cornflour 1.60
irish butter 2.18
local free range eggs 2.00
sugar 1.00
local strawberries 6.00
blueberries 2.00
cream 1.80
creme fraiche 1.70
total: 20.18

if i had to buy the herbs for this cake it would easily cost and extra 5 - 7 euro.
and if i didnt have the vanilla bean another 2 euro at least!
so we could say it would cost the home baker to bake this at home a cool 29 euro + time to bake it and possibly drop it or something.
so its totally worth paying to have us bake it for you by hand (not in a factory) with prime ingredients !


Thursday, July 21, 2011

New items in the bakery!

Just a little update. The deli side of the business has been doing quite well, and this week I have increased our stock from The Real Olive Co.. We have received a new brand of Manchego, a new olive oil, more olives(this week we have stuffed green olives) and we have the fresh buffalo mozzarella and semi sundried tomatoes back in stock! So, if you are planning a picnic at the beach please stop in and check us out.. We have also increased our bread production...It takes us 2-3 days to make an increase, as we start the biga 2 days before the actual bread is baked...for those of you that don't know, the reason why our bread is so tasty, is to do with the process of making the bread...the bread is actually formed in the afternoon the day before it is baked..then left in a cool fridge to do a slow rise overnight, to be baked in the morning...
Enjoy the sun!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Diva open tonight

Last night we had a great night..... a 7 top and a few 2 tops with a 4 top thrown in, perfect for breaking in slowly...I think everyone enjoyed their fact one customer said they were pleasantly surprised with the quality of food we were serving...
On that note, I would like to take a few seconds to explain the ethos at Diva..nothing too fancy, just good fresh food...the plates don't match as well as the tables, the chairs are all different, so is the cutlery, glasses, cups and saucers...but what you do get is good prices for the quality of food served..the menu is mostly organic and locally sourced, we like to keep things simple but different, using lots of fresh herbs for flavour...
So if you are interested pop in! We are serving Thurs and Fri from roughly 6-9:45(ish)...

Hand made crab ravioli

Roasted hake with apricot salsa

Grilled veggie stack with buffalo mozzarella

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

i need a shot! a jelly shot!

just found this blog today. the funny thing is that, last night, at the cafe's art opening we had a tray of vodka jellies a la jessie mae winchester. then wham, i woke up, and read about this ultra jelly shot blog. im so excited to make cocktail themed jelly shots for another drinks party! these guys have taken a retro staple and made it classy and desireable. you almost want to wear some of them. be sure to look in their recipes section for the full list of cocktail creations, so0 INSPIRED. be the first to have cocktail jellies at your own party......

Sunday, July 10, 2011


The past 3 weeks the bakery has brought back the sticky bun..this year we have a new and improved version. We are using our brioche... The result is a light spongy tasty sticky bun.. Pair that with a honey based caramel and toasted nuts...amazing... a caramel cloud is what one person called it..

PS. When looking at recipes for caramel...we have found that the tastiest caramel has honey in it..

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Write Up in the Irish Times

Great news! today we were very happy to find out that our bakery is a mover and a shaker in the food circle, by none other than the Irish Times! our Ballinspittle Sourdoughtm was mentioned in the article as well as our evening dinners! so pop down and treat yourself to a tasty dinner with some sourdough bread baked the same day, be a part of the breaking news!

Serving dinner : thurs-fri night 6-10pm


Tuesday, July 5, 2011


This past weekend Diva was buzzing with catering jobs for weddings, 40th birthday parties, and day after wedding there was a christening cake, our regular wholesale customers...and last but not least, supplying the cafe and keeping the bakery stocked!
The staff at Diva were kicking into high gear this last week, and I have to say, our customers were happy! YAY! That is always my biggest worry, that something will be missed or one dish just won't turn out as I had wanted...But not this week, the catering Gods were smiling down upon me...and I am so delighted that we were able to put smiles on faces and fill hungry are a few photos from this weekend...