Eggnog Panna Cotta with Crystalised Cranberries

I do love panna cotta and by adding the eggnog flavours to this recipe, it elevates to a whole new Yuletide tasting experience!

Makes 4


For the panna cotta

3 egg yolks

120g caster sugar

250ml milk

300ml double cream

3 tbsp white rum

Small pinch nutmeg

3 gelatine leaves


For the crystalised cranberries

60g fresh cranberries

1 egg white

100g caster sugar


Pinch nutmeg, to decorate

Small bay leaves, to decorate 

You will need 4 x 150ml glasses

To prepare the panna cotta, place the caster sugar into the egg yolks and whisk until smooth, light in colour and fluffy.

Soak the gelatine leaves in 100ml cold water until they are soft.

Heat the milk and double cream, rum and nutmeg in a saucepan over a medium heat until just hot.

Remove the gelatine from the water, squeeze out the excess liquid.  Then whisk into the hot cream mix.

Then while continuously whisking, pour the hot cream mix into the eggs and sugar mix.   

Pour or ladle the mixture into a jug and carefully transfer into the glasses filling them up to 1cm from the rim.

Leave to set in the fridge for at least 4 hours.

To prepare the cranberries, place them in a bowl.  Whisk the egg whites.  Spoon in 2 tablespoons of egg white and toss cranberries. Pour the sugar onto a plate and then roll the cranberries in until covered. Leave at room temperature to dry – this will take a couple of hours. 

To assemble, take the panna cotta out the fridge about 30 minutes before serving. Arrange the crystalised cranberries around the top and add the small bay leaves.

Beef Wellington with Mushrooms & Red Onion Gravy

Traditionally this recipe includes pate too but I love the mushrooms exclusively and I feel its sufficiently rich as is.

Serves 4

800g beef fillet, trimmed


25g butter

1 tbsp rapeseed oil

3 small shallots, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

2 tbsp chopped thyme

350g mixed mushrooms, chopped (I used portobello, king oyster and brown and white beech)

4 slices of parma ham

500g puff pastry


For the Red Onion Gravy

1 tbsp butter

1 tbsp rapeseed oil

3 red onions, thinly sliced

1 bay leaf

2 sprigs thyme

200ml red wine

1 tsp balsamic vinegar

400ml chicken or beef stock

2 tsp arrowroot (or cornflour), slaked in 1 tbsp water (optional)


Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Egg wash (one egg and 2 tbsp cold water, beaten with a fork)


Wrap the piece of beef up tightly in a double layer of cling film to set its shape and chill overnight.


Melt the butter and oil in the frying pan and add the shallots, sauté for 2 minutes on low without browning them and then add the garlic and thyme and sauté for a further 2 minutes.

Increase the heat, add the mushrooms and cook for about 5 minutes, ensuring they are fully cooked and all of the excess moisture from the mushrooms has evaporated. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Leave to cool completely.


When ready to assemble. Preheat the oven to 220°C/200°C fan/gas 8. 

Remove the beef from the fridge, unwrap the cling wrap. Wrap the beef in the parma ham and set aside.

Roll about 400g of the pastry out to 25cm x 35cm – sufficient to cover the beef and the mushroom mix.

Spread two thirds of the mushroom mixture down the middle of the pastry leaving 8cm border on each side. Place the beef in the centre of the mushrooms and spread the other third of the mushrooms on top of the meat.

To wrap the beef in the pastry, brush the pastry border with egg wash. Fold in the short sides of the pastry over the beef. Fold over the long ends and set on the roasting tray, turning over so that the seam is on the base.  Brush with egg wash.

Then, take a strip of pastry and using a lattice roller, cut out a lattice shape.  (or cut stars, leaves or hearts! Whatever you choose to decorate). Lay the lattice over the wellington, trim the ends of the pastry, forming a neat conical shape.  Brush with egg wash again and roast for 45 minutes approximately for medium rare – about 55-57C reading on a meat thermometer.  For medium, the temperature should read 60-62C.  Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

To prepare the gravy, melt the butter and oil in a saucepan, add the onions and sauté for 6 to 7 minutes until softened but not browned.

Add the bay leaf, thyme and red wine, bring to the boil and leave to simmer for 10 minutes before adding the balsamic vinegar and stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for a further 5 minutes. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

If you feel the gravy needs thickening, stir in the arrowroot (or cornflour) paste and stir well. Cook for 2 minutes.



Roasted Ballymakenny Heritage Potatoes with Tenderstem Broccoli and Creamy Tarragon Dressing

This is a marriage made in heaven – heirloom potatoes, roasted with fresh broccoli and the most delicious of dipping sauces!

Serves 4


800g Ballymakenny heritage potatoes, scrubbed and roughly chopped

2 tbsp Irish rapeseed oil

1 large stalk rosemary

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


400g tenderstem broccoli

Large knob butter

2 tablespoons water


For the tarragon dressing

100ml crème fraiche

½ lemon, juice only

½ tsp sugar

1 tsp Irish wholegrain mustard

60ml Irish rapeseed oil

1 spring onion, finely chopped

2 tsp tarragon, finely chopped

Salt and white pepper


For the potatoes, preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/gas 6. Place the potatoes, oil, rosemary leaves, salt and freshly ground black pepper in a bowl and toss well.

Transfer to a roasting pan and roast for 50 minutes until golden and cooked, shaking the pan from time to time.

To prepare the broccoli, heat a large frying pan that has a lid, add the butter and let it melt, then add the broccoli and sauté on a medium heat for 3-4 minutes.  Then add a few tablespoons of water, reduce the heat, cover and let the broccoli steam-fry – this will take about 3-4 minutes (it may take longer depending on the thickness of the broccoli stems). As soon as its ready remove from the heat.

To prepare the dressing, place the crème fraiche, lemon juice, sugar, wholegrain mustard and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper in a bowl.

Slowly pour in the oil while whisking until smooth.

Stir in the spring onion and tarragon.  Store in the fridge for up to 2 days if you are not going to use it immediately.   

To serve, place the roasted potatoes in the centre of a platter and arrange the roasted broccoli on the outside. Spoon over some tarragon dressing.


Christmas Negroni with Marmalade Citrus Bitters

This classic Italian Campari cocktail packs a punch. For sweeter a note to this cocktail, replace the Vermouth Rosso with Sweet Vermouth or add a few drops of simple syrup.

Makes 1 cocktail

For the cranberry orange ice cubes

20 cranberries

1 orange, zest only

300ml cold water


For the cocktail

30ml vermouth rosso

30ml Campari

30ml gin

7 drops Off the Cuffe Marmalade Citrus Bitters



For the ice, arrange the ingredients into the segments of an ice cube tray and pour in the water. Freeze until ready to use.

To make the cocktail, firstly chill the serving glass.  Then add all the ingredients to a long glass and stir gently with a stirrer or a long spoon – for no more than 15 seconds.  Then strain the contents into the chilled cocktail glass.  Add three or four cranberry orange ice cubes and serve immediately.


Christmas Negroni Mocktail with Marmalade Citrus Bitters

Influenced by the Negroni, this mocktail showcases the botanicals of gin and the citrus bitters bringing the Campari style element. If your taste is for a more bitter cocktail, I would suggest adding some of the Italian Sanbitter which will also give that glorious pale pink shade.

Makes 1 cocktail

For the ice cubes

20 cranberries

1 orange, zest only

300ml cold water


120ml white grape juice (or non-alcoholic white wine)

1 tsp pink peppercorns

1 tsp juniper berries, gently crushed

½ lime, zest only

Sprig of lemon balm

10 drops Off the Cuffe Marmalade Citrus Bitters



To decorate

Long rosemary sprig, to decorate

For the ice cubes, arrange the ingredients into the segments of an ice cube container and pour in the water. Freeze overnight.

For the cocktail, firstly chill the serving glass.  Then pour the grape juice into a saucepan, add the pink peppercorns, juniper berries, lime zest and a sprig of lemon balm. Bring to a bare simmer, then remove from the heat and allow to cool completely.

Pour all the juice mix into a tall glass, add the Marmalade Citrus Bitters and ice and stir gently with a stirrer or a long spoon – for no more than 15 seconds.  Then, using a fine sieve, strain the contents into the chilled cocktail glass.  Add three or four cranberry orange ice cubes, finish with a rosemary sprig and serve immediately.


Duo of Carlingford Oysters – Mignonette Oysters and Catherine’s Smokey Oysters

I love the combination of the raw and cooked oysters.  And for those of us who are nervous of raw oysters and / or shucking them, the baked oysters will introduce you to a whole new (and easy) way of enjoying the wonderful Irish oysters

Serves 4

12 Carlingford oysters on ice


Mignonette Oysters

For the mignonette sauce

4 shallots, very finely chopped

50ml white wine vinegar

50ml rice vinegar

¼ tsp white pepper

Pinch sugar, to taste


To prepare the mignonette sauce, combine the shallots, white wine vinegar and rice vinegar together – stir in the pepper and a pinch of sugar to taste. Mix well and leave for at least 4 hours or overnight for the flavours to infuse.


Catherine’s Smokey Oysters

For the flavoured butter

50g butter

2 tsp lemon juice

½ tsp smoked paprika

½ tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp finely chopped parsley


Flat leaf parsley, to garnish

Lemon slices, to garnish



To prepare the grilled oysters, heat the oven to 220C/ 200C fan/ gas 7

Scrub the oyster to remove any dirt and rinse under cold water. Set aside.

Place the oyster flat side up on the roasting tray and bake for 12 minutes, just until the oyster juices begin to seep out from the shells. Remove from the oven.  And to open, use an oyster shucker – run the shucker back to the hinge of the oyster and then twist. If the oyster is still attached to the muscle on the shell, run the shucker between the oyster and muscle.


Meantime, melt the butter along with the lemon juice, paprika, Worcestershire sauce and parsley in a saucepan and heat for 1 minutes. Set aside.

To serve, arrange the oysters, 3 grilled and 3 raw on each plate and spoon over one teaspoon of the butter onto the grilled oyster and spoon a little of mignonette sauce over each of the raw oysters.

Sprinkle over some flat leaf parsley and garnish with lemon slices

Catherine Celebrates airs RTE One on Monday 21st December at 7.30pm

Catherine Celebrates Christmas on RTE ONE this December as Catherine Fulvio serves up her favourite Christmas recipes, treats and hints & tips with Oysters, Potatoes and Bitters.

This Christmas will be unique with no-one knowing what COVID promises to bring us this Christmas whether we are naughty or nice, will we be able to meet with family and friends or just stay close to home and celebrate with immediate family. Either way, Catherine Fulvio will show us how to do it in style with tasty treats, using delicious Irish artisan producers that won’t break the bank. ‘Catherine Celebrates’ will air on Wednesday 21st December at 7.30 pm.

Catherine Fulvio virtually meets some of Ireland’s finest artisan producers that are currently supplying us with unique and wonderful tasty choices.

Carlingford Oyster Company

Carlingford Oysters was established in 1974 by Peter Louët-Feisser and is currently managed by his son Kian and his wife Mary. With a team of 18 they produce 2,500,000 oysters annually. They airfreight oysters worldwide with customers in London, Milan, Hongkong, Singapore, Taipei, Bangkok and Beijing as well as all over Ireland.A family run business, Carlingford Oyster Company has the privilege of working in spectacular

natural surroundings of Carlingford Lough where oysters have thrived for many centuries. Kian and Mary are passionate about their oysters and nature has created the ideal location to grow oysters right on their doorstep.

The unique sweet taste and high meat content of the Carlingford Oyster is one of nature’s real treasures. However, they are not the only ones to discover this secret as their award-winning oysters are found on the menus of many of the world’s most exclusive restaurants. Carlingford Oysters have been awarded 3 stars at the Guild of Fine Foods Great Taste Awards in 2018 and 2020 and 2 stars in 2016, 2017 and 2019. They received the Gold Medal at the 2015 Cloudy Bay UK Oyster Championships. At the Irish Blas na h’Eireann Food Awards they received a silver medal in 2017 and Gold in 2020.

Ballymakenny Heritage Potatoes

Ballymakenny Farm Heritage and Specialty Potatoes started as a hobby for Maria Flynn in 2015 when she grew some Violetta Specialty Purple Potatoes and took to social media to reach out to chefs.  With the help of her husband David the first crop of Ballymakenny Farm Violetta Potatoes appeared in chefs’ kitchens in Oct 2015. 

What has happened in the last six years is nothing short of incredible. Ballymakenny

Farm now focus only on growing for chefs. This season a curve ball hit with the Covid 19 pandemic, but they are still receiving fantastic support from their wholesalers and supplying our #PotatoParcels into small independently owned grocery shops, bakeries, coffee shops and butchers. Chefs doing take away service are also still playing a big part of their season.

Ballymakenny Farm are also due to feature with Dunnes Stores Simply Better Range this month. An all Irish roasting tray of potatoes featuring Red Emmalie and Mayan Gold.

Off the Cuffe Bitters

Off The Cuffe Bitters are literally handmade by Jarrod Cuffe at the Chocolate Factory, Kings Inn Street, Dublin using Irish Newmake Whiskey Spirit. That is the distilled spirit produced at an Irish whiskey distillery before it is rested in a barrel.This is important as Off The Cuffe has been crafted to enhance the wonderful whiskeys, gins, vodkas and

other spirits being made on the island of Ireland today.

Off the Cuffe Bitters are characterized by purity of flavour. This is due to the quality of the Newmake, the use of organic herbs and the by-hand extraction process. Highly concentrated Off The Cuffe Bitters are an exceptional addition to the bartender’s palette.

Cocktails have become a very important footfall and revenue driver for premium bars, as the cocktail revolution has taken hold in Ireland. At last, there is a beautifully crafted premium bitters brand made in Ireland, for the best bars to use in exceptional cocktails. an exceptional brand from Ireland for the best bartenders in the best bars promising;

  • Exceptional flavour from natural ingredients
  • No Artificial colours or Sweeteners
  • Made using organic botanicals
  • Ingredients individually infused to insure each distinct flavour truly sings
  • Made With Irish Whiskey Newmake • Made in Ireland