This is the second post in a two-part round-up of this year’s Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery which took place from July 9-11, 2010 at St. Catherine’s College, Oxford. This year’s theme was Cured, Fermented, and Smoked Foods. You can find Part I here.
Saturday night’s dinner celebrated the rich cornucopia that is the modern cuisine of Ireland and was cooked for us by Padraic Og Gallagher of Gallagher’s Boxty House in Dublin. Before we ate we were shown a lovely video in which the chef (and his brother the videographer) traveled around Ireland and introduced us to some of the artisanal producers of the ingredients which made up the meal we were about to taste. Here’s the extensive menu, with links to producers where possible:
Wrights of Howth Organic Smoked Salmon, drizzled with Connemara Peated Single Malt Whiskey
Sally Barnes’ Smoked Mackerel
Ummera Smoked Silver Eel
Fingal Ferguson’s Venison Salami and Irish Chroizo
McCarthy’s of Kanturk Guinness & Cider Spiced Beef
McGeough’s Air-dried Lamb
all served with Treacle & Soda bread, Horseradish cream & Ballymaloe Relish
served with Cuinneog Irish Butter, Sauteed York Cabbage, Champ Potato, Parsley Sauce, and a Cider & Wholegrain Mustard Sauce.
All of this abundance was accompanied by the following beverages:
White Bordeaux – Pessac Leognan – l’Abelle de Fieuzal, 2003
Red Bordeaux – Château Bahans Haut-Brion 1999
Red Bordeaux – Clarendelle Rouge 2004, Clarence Dillon
and finally the pièce de resistance:
Irish Coffee made with Kilbeggan Finest Irish Whiskey.
If you think that was a banquet (and it was!) wait until you hear what we had for lunch on Sunday for the final meal of the symposium. Several members of different Slow Food Convivia in Norway conspired to bring us a traditional (and sustainable!) Norwegian Lunchbord. The ingredients arrived via sailing ship from Bergen via Cardiff and were then prepared, under the direction of Pål Drønen and Margareth Tislevoll.
If you wanted to demonstrate to someone the meaning of the phrase “groaning boards” when referring to a great feast, this lunch would do the job. There were long tables full of carefully labeled delicacies, some rarely found outside of Norway. It was impossible to try everything, but what I sampled was amazing. It really demonstrated to us that the scandinavians are the kings of cured, fermented and smoked foods, getting the most out of their short growing season. I think a trip to Norway is in my future. Here’s the menu, with producers where possible:
Cold Fish Dishes
Sølvisild, sullsid, and hardrøykt sild – silver herring, gold herring, and hard cured herring from Jnardar AS, Leinøy, Norway.
Kryddersild – marinated herring from H.J. Kyvik AS, Haugesund, Norway
Rakørret – fermented trout from Skarvheimen Fjellfisk, Ål, Norway
Røkelaks “Lærdalslaks” – smoked salmon from Sognefjord Gourmet, Årdal, Norway.
Røykt gjeddepølse, varmrøykt gjedde, and raket gjeddekaviar – smoked sausage of pike, hot smoked pike, and fermented caviar of pike Esox lucus
Gravet sik, varmrøykt sik, and raket sikrogn – cured whitefish, hot smoked whitefish, and fermented caviar of whitefish Coregonus lavaretus
all from Villfisken AS, Hallingby, Norway.
Hot Fish Dishes
Klipfisk – salt cod from Olga Godø,Godøy, Norway
Tørrfisk – stockfish from Lofotskrei, Ballstad, Norway.
Rødsei – red saithe or old salted saith Pollachius virens from Seløy fisk, Herøy, Norway.
Speket viltpølse – cured game sausage from reindeer, red deer, and lard from Li gardstun, Aurland, Norway.
Speket Geitepølse – cured goat sausage from Sturle Ryum, Gudmedalen Fellsfjøs, Aurland, Norway.
Fenalår, and speket lammepølse – cured leg of lamb, and lamb sausage from Ekta Skåramat, Granvin, Norway.
Spekeskinke – cured ham from Ekta Skåramat, Granvin, Norway.
Hot Meat Dishes
Saltet og røykt lammebog – salted and smoked shoulder of lamb from Holo gard, Flåm, Norway.
Røykt lammepølse – smoked lamb sausage from Ekta Skåramat, Granvin, Norway.
Norwegian Cheeses and Dairy Products (all made from unpasteurised milk)
Pultost – a crumbly sour-milk cheese from Helen Dave, Vesterhaugen Gårdsysteri, Våler, Norway and Tore Skarpnord, Høgda Gardsmeieri, Brumunddal, Norway.
Gamalost – a cooked sour-milk cheese from Maria Ballhaus, Sogn Jord-og Hagebruksskule, Aurland, Norway.
Jærost – semi-hard cows’ milk cheese (10 months old) from Voll ysteri, Voll, Norway.
Kvit Undredalsost – semi-hard goats milk cheese (3-6 months old, and 2 years old)
Undredal Stølsysteri, Undredal, Norway.
Brimost – brown goats’ milk why cheese (fresh) from Rallarrosa Stølsysteri, Flåm, Norway.
Tjukkmjølk – “thick milk,” organic cultured milk from Rørosmeieriet, Røros, Norway.
Rømme and smør – organic sour cream, and butter from Rørosmeieriet, Røros, Norway.
Lefser – soft flat bread from Leveld lefsebakeri, Ål, Norway.
Flatbrød – crisp flat bread from Veitastrond flatbrødbakeri, Veitastrond, Norway. and Gardsbutikken, Øystese, Norway.
Molter – cloudberries Rubus chamaemorus
Hermetiske moreller and “Mallard” plommer – preserved sweet cherries and “Mallard” plums from Nøring ANS, Øystese, Norway.
Hermetiske epler and pærer – preserved apples and pears from Syse gard, Ulvik, Norway.
Sirupstynnkake – syrup wafers from Brynhild Levang, Rendalen, Norway.
Ale and Aquavite
Nøgna Ø India Pale Ale and Nøgna Ø Imperial Brown Ale from Nøgna Ø, Grimstad, Norway.
Lysholm Linie aquavit from Arcus, Oslo, Norway.
Next year, the theme at the Oxford Symposium will be “Celebrations.” After this, I can’t imagine what they will come up with.