Inspiring Good Health

Hi everyone,this week I intend to continue on with some gorgeous recipes for healthy mind, body and soul. Lately I have been spending a lot of time in the gardens here at Ballyknocken House & Cookery School.  I just get so excited when I see all the wonderful, herbs, vegetables and soft fruits begin to flourish.  Here in the picture you can see some beautiful Alpine Strawberries in bloom. I just love them. There is nothing like the feeling of plucking some gorgeous fresh berries from the ground and getting them into my kitchen to include in some tasty new recipe I am trying.

On this note for all things berry………….


If you would like to make some gorgeous Berry recipes I have written them in the RTE Guide this week and if you pick up a copy you can make them at home yourself. I included Chilled out Strawberry Lollies, and Berry Parfaits below, YUM.


For a beautiful healthy dinner to accompany these fab berry desserts I have here a recipe for a healthy power packed Butternut Squash, Leek and Spinach Bake. Yes I know I have included cream but a little bit of what we love never hurt anyone 🙂

In other news I am just loving watching the new RTE1 series I filmed this year with Derry Clarke and Paul Flynn two amazing fellow chefs and good friends. I can’t tell you how much fun it was to do this fantastic series with them and a huge thanks to all the team who made it the great show it is. I hope you are all enjoying it

Have a fab weekend and enjoy the recipes



Butternut Squash, Leek and Spinach Bakes

Bake these the day before and just heat them 20 minutes before you’re about to serve. Keep the parchment wrappers on when you serve them – the children will love them as well as grandparents! If you have any left, pack these for your lunch at the office with a refreshing rocket and pink grapefruit salad.

Makes 12

extra virgin olive oil

1 leek, finely sliced

30g baby spinach

1 small butternut squash, peeled, very thinly

sliced and cut to fit a muffin tin

3 eggs, beaten

100ml cream

1 tsp chopped fresh thyme

salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

12 small sprigs of thyme

1 Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4. Line a 12-hole muffin tray with square pieces of parchment paper.

2 Heat a little extra virgin olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat and sauté the leek for 5–6 minutes, until cooked. Add the spinach to the pan and cook for 1 minute more.

3 Spoon the leek and spinach mixture into the muffin tray and layer the finely sliced butternut squash on top.

4 Whisk the eggs, cream, thyme and some salt and pepper in a jug, then carefully pour it over the butternut squash and leek layers. Sprinkle with the parsley and bake for 15–18 minutes, checking that they’re cooked and set by inserting a skewer. Do not overcook.

5 Remove from the muffin tray and serve warm with sprigs of thyme on top.


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