We caught up with Galway girl, Gráinne Mullins. The Eurotoques Young Chef of the Year 2019 and a pastry chef that embraces local and seasonal produce. Make sure to follow her Instagram & Facebook page to follow her journey.
Gráinne has honed her skills preparing and creating a range of desserts for some of Ireland’s leading restaurants. Bringing creativity and adventure to her cooking style, she has a goal of breathing new life into old favourites.
Gráinne is embarking on a new business venture. Find out more on her business page here.
Ahead of her IGTV on our Instagram on Sunday 14th June at 1pm, we wanted to find out more about Gráinne….
Why did you become a chef?
Food is my world! I live and breath everything and anything that is related to cooking! It has been this way the most part of my life. I was always happiest in the kitchen.
Leaving school I decided not to follow my heart and instead follow another huge interest of mine, Science. The turning point that made me realise that I wanted to be a chef was the excitement I would feel when I would get to work. The thrill of service and the excitement of flavours was much more exciting than my chemistry lectures. Saying that, my background in science allows me the understanding and precision needed in the pastry world, and this knowledge has stood to me every day that I’m in the kitchen.
What was the first thing you ever cooked?
I had to ask my mother for the answer to this question. She answered with certainty “Crumble! It has to have been crumble!” My parents encouraged me to join in when they were cooking or baking. They allowed us the freedom to join in and get our little fingers right into the crumble mix. For our crumble we would pick the apples from the trees and forage the blackberries. This definitely instilled in me from a young age the importance of local produce.
What is your ultimate comfort food recipe?
I love soups. There is something so comforting about a bowl of chicken broth or a more substantial pumpkin soup. Perfect on a cold winters afternoon .
What are your top 3 ingredients that you couldn’t live without and why?
My ingredients are very basic but are so versatile. Butter, flour and eggs. When they are good quality they are all of huge nutritional value and can be used to create such a huge range of dishes. Side note, butter is the best! Bread and butter is unbeatable!
What are your top tips for people cooking at home?
I will say to follow recipes, especially when it comes to desserts or pastry items. If you can follow a recipe then once you have made it frequently you will understand the techniques and flavours and can begin to adapt. Also, use good produce. If your produce is of good quality to begin with you can almost guarantee that your end product will also be delicious.
Name one dish everyone should know how to cook.
Crepes or pancakes. It’s a pretty simple recipe that is perfect for breakfast or brunch and even if they are made savoury can be used as a dinner.
If you would like to cook along with Gráinne on our Instagram IGTV on Sunday 14th June at 1pm here is the recipe for her Eton Mess:
Eton Mess – Serves 6
- 3 meringue nests
- 250g cream
- ½ punnet strawberries
- 50ml water
- 50g caster sugar
- 3 elderflower heads
- 1 rose
- ¼ lemon
- Rose water, to taste
- Bring the sugar and water to the boil.
- Add in the elderflowers, cover with clingfilm and allow to infuse for 15 minutes off the heat.
- Meanwhile chop your strawberries, crush your meringue.
- Add 3 drops of rosewater to your cream, to taste and then whip to soft peaks.
- Sieve the stock syrup and add to the strawberries with the lemon juice.
- Alternate the layers of strawberries, cream and meringue.
- Decorate with elderflowers and rose petals.