Monday, June 1, 2009


1988 saw the Millenium year in Dublin, IRELAND. Among the many celebrations and commissions, one of the more memorable ones for me was the commissioning of the bronze sculpture of the infamous "MOLLY MALONE" The sculptor was none other than Irelands foremost living artists, JEANNE RYNHART. At the time I was finishing my senior year in school and dating her son Barry ! Of course back then, I was probably more interested in her son than her obvious talent! Now I am grown up (although open to debate !) I am in awe of her talent. Molly Malone died on June 13th 1699 and now June 13th is known as Molly Malone Day in Ireland !

"As she wheeled her wheelbarrow
Through the streets broad and narrow
Crying "Cockles and mussels,alive,alive,oh!"

Irreverantly,as the IRISH only know how,she is also known as "The Tart with the Cart" and "The Trollop with the Scallops" She is also displaying her own personal wares !!!!

Ireland has an abundant supply of assorted mollusks. My personal favorites are Oysters,Clams and mussels. Every September,Galway City hosts the famous Oyster Festival.
Collecting these delectable shellfish is a treat. If you live along shores that provide these treats then I beg you not to take it for granted as I did. You are very lucky. Living in Dallas has taught me that lesson! Washington State is famous for its mollusks,namely those found along the PUGET SOUND.

This week I will enter a contest with the FOOD NETWORK using mussels found in Washington as my main ingredient. It is very important to choose the right ones and to prep them properly.

1- Try to purchase Fresh Mussels
2- The shells should be tightly closed if they are still alive
3- Dont forget to DEBEARD them before cooking
4- This is done by tugging the stringy material towards the hinge edge.
5- Soak them for approx 20/30 mins in fresh water before cooking
6- Hand or brush clean them under running water to remove any extra barnacles,sand etc

I will be posting a video later this week of my recipe,with an IRISH TWIST on line.
There are similarities between Molly Malone and myself ! Although both of us are indeed blessed with buxom qualities, I doubt that I will dress the same !!! Might be a little cheeky !!