“Great food and great company – with these two you can’t go wrong”

A permanent and beloved part of many Irish homes, The Daly Dish cookbooks offer endless inspiration and all the best essential advice any foodie could need.

Created by food fanatics Karol and Gina Daly, their first cookbook became the number one bestseller in Ireland, breaking all pre-sale records in Irish history. Now, with three cookbooks under their wing and a Daly Dish journal to help you keep track of your eating habits, they’re two foodies who really know their stuff.

So naturally, we had to pick their brains on absolutely everything gastronomic. From finding inspiration on their travels and translating it into exciting new recipes to shouting out to the foodies of the future, read it all below…

What are your first culinary memories?

Gina: I remember my mum giving me a bottle of porridge with the top of the teat cut off to pop out, that’s probably my very first memory of food and maybe the reason why I no longer have ate porridge before i was 30 lol

How would you describe your relationship to food?

Carol: Mortal, I love it. For us food can be a very social thing, sitting down at the end of the day for a family meal and a chat, it brings us all together. We are always experimenting with new recipes, so it’s also a fun journey.

What is the first meal you learned to cook?

Gina: The first thing I cooked “by myself” was an omelette when I was about 9 or 10 years old. My mom gave me a quick “how to” and I became obsessed with them. I don’t even think it was because I loved them so much, but the feeling of independence as a child being allowed to use the stove and pots made me feel so adult.

How did food become part of your career/business/personal brand?

Carol: We had both cooked up a storm on our Instagram accounts of dishes we loved and had fun doing it, and then we were asked to write a cookbook, which to be honest, we still can’t. believe we did it…. And here we are 3 years later with three #1 bestselling cookbooks, it’s amazing.

What is your favorite breakfast?

Gina: Coffee first, that goes without saying! And two of our favorite breakfasts for the whole family are homemade sausage and egg muffins, they’re great because you can bake them in batches and freeze them individually and they’re perfect for breakfast to go and then on the weekends, we like a breakfast burrito with a side of air fried crispy potatoes…massive.

Karol & Gina dish

If you’re impressing your friends and family at a dinner party, what do you serve?

Carol: We absolutely love making big spreads, big pizza boards because everyone loves a good pizza, right? Or a big Mexican sharing feast, tacos, nachos, etc. Although I think the one that never fails to impress is a big pot or our chicken curry, it’s a recipe from our first book and one that’s made in this house regularly.

What is your culinary inspiration?

Gina: For us, it’s not a who, it’s a what. Many of our recipes were inspired by our travels and the dishes we tasted along the way, which we then recreate at home in our kitchen with our own twist. Our favorite places to travel are Italy and America, two very different but so inspiring gastronomic adventures. We always come home so excited about the new things we’re going to create.

What would be your last meal on earth?

Carol: I get asked this question often and the answer always changes depending on my mood. Right now I’m thinking a double double burger, fries and a chocolate shake from In-N-Out burger in California and a side of tacos from Los Tacos in New York, that’s for sure my last meal so I won’t be counting the calories. Oh, and a six-pack of Guinness.

What’s your favorite comfort food?

Gina: 100% chicken, leek and chorizo ​​pie. When I was pregnant with our youngest Gene last year, I had the greatest craving for leeks and we put them in everything, at some point. We made the chicken, leek and chorizo ​​pie at least twice a week or a similar variation with pasta and it was like a hug in a bowl.

What’s the quick meal you cook when you’re tired and hungry?

Carol: When I’m tired and hungry I usually hope Gina will cook lol. For me it’s all about the flavor and how quickly I can get it on my fork. I usually cooked one of the following dishes, spaghetti aglio olio e peperoncino, pasta with lemon, garlic and chilli or a carbonara with nduja sausage. Very quick to make and absolutely delicious. I’m getting hungry now.

What is a food or flavor that you can’t stand?

Gina: Anything with tentacles! I recently went to a Japanese restaurant and ordered white fish tempura, they mixed up my order and a plate of battered tentacles and suckers came out and I nearly lost my life.

Cure for a hangover?

Carol: Hair or dog, another pint of Guinness! I think for me the perfect hangover food is a big dirty grilled cheese sandwich and a bowl of soup. Impossible to be wrong.

Sweet or salty ?

Gina: I’m not the biggest fan of sweet so this would be salty for me. Now don’t get me wrong, I can easily inhale a Krispy Kreme donut but I would still order a starter and main course and skip dessert for a coffee or a pint

Gastronomy or pub food?

Carol: Personally, I think you can’t beat great pub grub without notions, nice warm surroundings and a big plate of something delicious. Pie and chips and a pint and I’m happy.

Favorite restaurant in Ireland?

Gina: We love so many places, but the one place we always come back to is Platform Pizza in Bray. Ever since the kids were little, we celebrate birthdays and special occasions here, so it’s a combination of good pizza, good company, and special memories.

The best coffee in Ireland?

Carol: The one we do lol! During lockdown the only thing we really missed was going out for a coffee so we invested in a decent coffee machine for the goof and after some trial and error we perfected the art of making flat white decent. Although special mention at The Front Room in Longwood, Mickey Burke makes a wicked mocha.

Go-to drink accompaniment?

Gina: I’d like to say a sexy big charcuterie board with fancy cheese and nice charcuterie (which I’m not wrong about, I love it) but you really can’t beat a bag of Tayto cheese and chips at the onion can you!!

What do you think of the Irish food scene?

Carol: It’s great to see so many new places opening up. As a couple who like to try new things, it’s exciting to go find somewhere new or different to try. Whether it’s a food truck, restaurant, chipper or cafe, we’re always up for something new and it’s great to have that choice.

What do you prefer in the kitchen?

Gina: As a family of five, my favorite thing is being able to make everyone happy with the food they love and can’t wait to eat. The smells when they come home from school and the happiness in their little faces when they have a full stomach, that’s all for me.

Karol & Gina dish

What is food – sitting down for a meal with friends, consciously preparing a meal, feeding yourself, etc. – means to you?

Carol: As I mentioned before, I love that food can bring people together, a big family meal at the end of the day where we all sit down and chat, or a dinner party where we cook for friends and all catch up delicious dishes. Or even go out for a meal with family and friends,

Food for thought – Is there room for improvement within the Irish food/restaurant/hospitality scene?

Gina: The culinary scene in Ireland has come a long way in recent years which is amazing to see. I think there is always room for improvement and evolution and it’s great to see that happening there, it makes it exciting and fun.

Chef’s Kiss — Tell us about an exceptional culinary experience you had recently.

Carol: One of the most memorable was a BBQ with my cousin and his wife who we hadn’t seen in a while. He made a Brazilian BBQ which was absolutely delicious, with great sides, great wine and even better company. For me it is a perfect fine dining experience. Eat good food and create memories.

Compliments to the chef – Now is your chance to sing the praises of a talented chef, a beloved restaurant or a particularly talented foodie family member.

Gina: I have to mention our daughter Holly, who is 13, and over the past two years she has developed so much confidence in the kitchen and loves nothing more than making a delicious, simple dish from scratch in the kitchen. kitchen.

Secret Ingredient — What do you think makes the perfect dining experience?

Carol: Good food and good company. With these two, you can’t go wrong. And if you’re struggling in the kitchen on the food side, I can recommend a great cookbook to sort you out – Bold Food Made Good, written by a few legends. Enjoy!

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