Thursday, 17 July 2014

Sushi Demo at Taste of Dublin 2014

Here's some photos from my weekend at one of Dublin's most popular foodie festivals, Taste of Dublin. I gave sushi demos throughout the weekend in the FOOD&WINE Magazine Chef's Skillery area. The festival was really successful this year with an extended list of attractions, large crowds and fantastic weather.

If you're interested in attending a hands-on sushi making class or demo in the Dublin/ Kildare area please get in touch with me at

The timetable of demonstrations at the Chef's Skillery including Darina Allen and Clodagh McKenna.

Photographer Harry Weir taking a photo of me with my sushi on the cover of FOOD&WINE Magazine.

Electrolux Taste Theatre which had cooking demos everyday. I really enjoyed the demo pictured below with Michel Roux Jr.

 One of the food areas including the best of Dublin's restaurants.

The crab cake from Clodagh's Kitchen was really fresh and tasty.

Taste of Thailand area with plenty of room to sit around and enjoy the atmosphere.

The Bite Project - Photography Exhibition including a photo of Dee Laffan editor of EasyFood Magazine.

 The Brazilian Carnival Quarter to support the World Cup 2014 taking place in Brazil.

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Japanese Cooking Class at Ballyknocken Cookery School

Apologies for my lack of blog posts in recent weeks, I've been really busy giving Japanese cooking demonstrations at food festivals and events around Ireland. At these demonstrations, I love chatting to people and learning about how they became interested in Japanese cooking. Many people living in Ireland have connections with Japan and Japanese food either through a short visit to Japan or a relative living over there and this sparks an interest in Japanese cooking for them. 

Now, I want to share some exciting news with you! I've teamed up with Catherine Fulvio (TV chef and food writer) to give a hands-on Japanese cooking class at Ballyknocken Cookery School in Co. Wicklow on Sunday September 28th from 9:30am to 1:30pm. This 4 hour class will give you a unique insight into Japanese cooking and also time to grasp the recipes by trying them yourself during the class. 

If you're interested in hearing more about the class or booking a place please book through the link below or contact me directly ( 

Thursday, 12 June 2014

My Pandan Roulade on Powerscourt Hotel Afternoon Tea menu

 In April 14 my Pandan Roulade recipe was launched on the Afternoon Tea menu of Powerscourt 5 star Hotel in Co. Wicklow as part of my prize for winning the EasyFood Home-Cook Hero Awards 2013. 

Powerscourt Hotel is one of my favourite places to visit in Ireland as you immediately feel removed from the hustle and bustle of everyday life when you arrive there. It's located in County Wicklow and next to the well-known Powerscourt Estate

My family and I had a really enjoyable day at Powerscourt wandering around admiring the amazing views and of course sampling my dessert alongside Dee Laffan and Caroline Gray from Easy Food magazine. If you haven't visited Powerscourt Hotel you should include it on your list of places to visit this summer.


The EasyFood Home-Cook Hero Awards 2014 is now open for entries so if you think you have a winner recipe that you cook at home you should apply. I really enjoyed the whole experience last year from participating in the cook-off in Cooks Academy cookery school in Dublin to attending the Awards ceremony in the Shelbourne hotel.   

The copyright of the photos used in the post belongs to Fiona Uyema. Please ask for permission if you'd like to use them.

Monday, 2 June 2014

Bloom in the Park 2014 - Fiona Uyema's demo

One of the biggest highlights for me this year was the opportunity to give a Japanese cooking demonstration on the Bord Bia Quality Food Stage at Bloom alongside well-known chefs such as Neven McGuire, Donal Skehan and Catherine Fulvio

My demo was scheduled after Catherine Fulvio so I was delighted to get a chance to catch up with her after meeting at Ballymaloe Lit Fest in May.

The large crowds were intimidating but once my demo started my nerves turned into excitement and I really enjoyed giving the demonstration to such a great audience. Although I was demonstrating Japanese dishes most of the ingredients I used were from local Irish producers. Since Ireland is an island nation like Japan we are fortunate to have an abundance of ingredients used in Japanese cooking such as fresh fish and seaweed.

During the day I got a chance to wander around, I would recommend arriving early and giving yourself most of the day to go around to the different areas because there's so much to see. I really enjoyed checking out all the Irish artisan producer stalls and sampling their amazing products.

The following day I started to work in my own garden after being inspired by all the beautiful gardens at Bloom.

If you haven't been to Bloom you should definitely include it in the top of your events to go to next year. I promise you won't be disappointed.

The copyright of the photos used in the post belongs to Fiona Uyema. Please ask for permission if you'd like to use them. 

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Hanami in the Irish National Stud & Japanese Gardens

Last month my family and I went to the Irish National Stud and Japanese Gardens to practice the Japanese custom of hanami (cherry blossom viewing). Natalia from Smiles! Photography also came along to capture the beauty of the flowers and surroundings so I can share them here with you. 

When I lived in Japan I got a real insight into how Japanese people celebrate hanami by taking part in it with my Japanese friends and also my work colleagues. I remember the most junior member of staff had to sit under a tree most of the day to make sure we had the best spot for hanami after work. Hanami is enjoyed by sitting under a cherry blossom tree or nearby and appreciating the beauty of them while eating a packed bento with drinks. Here's a picture of our dog, Jackie enjoying hanami!! 

This is the perfect place to spend time with family or friends. I'd recommend bringing a picnic along and enjoying it on the benches in the car-park as you drive in or pack a picnic blanket to sit on the grass. We brought along a packed bento including homemade panko coated fish goujons, onigiri (rice balls) sprinkled with furikake and a selection of fresh fruit and vegetables.

- To see more about the Irish National Stud & Japanese gardens click on the link below:
- Thanks to Smiles! Photography for taking the photos of our family day in the Irish National Stud & Japanese Gardens. The copyright for these photos belongs to Smiles! Photography and Fiona Uyema so please ask for permission if you'd like to use them. 

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Ballymaloe Literary Festival of Food & Wine May 16th - 18th

View from Ballyhouse house taken during a visit in 2013
This Friday we're packing the car and heading to The Ballymaloe Literary Festival of Food & Wine which takes place in Cork. It's one of the most talked about foodie events taking place in Ireland this year bringing together a fantastic group of food writers, bloggers, critics and journalists from Ireland and abroad. The line up includes René Redzepi, chef and co-owner of Noma in Denmark who I would love to get the opportunity to speak to. Next year he'll go to Japan with his staff to learn about Japanese cuisine and culture. 

In addition to the scheduled events which take places at both Ballymaloe House and Ballymaloe Cookery School there's the Fringe Festival and the Big Shed which has been called the heartbeat of the festival!

Visiting Ballymaloe house in 2013

I'm scheduled to give sushi demonstrations in the Big Shed at 11am on both Saturday and Sunday (May 17th & 18th). You'll find artisan producers, musicians and lots more at the Big Shed. It's sounds like the perfect place to hang out, network or sample local produce. I might just meet René Redzepi there!

I'm also booked into see RTE's finest cooking demo (Catherine Fulvio, Martin Shanahan and Paul Flynn) and also hope to attend the seaweed foraging with John & Sally McKenna. 

Lunch at Ballymaloe house in 2013

For more information click on the link below, tickets still available for some events. 

Related articles:

At Ballymaloe house with my son in 2013

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Tofu steak coated in Japanese seven spice flour - easy vegetarian recipe

This is a really simple meat-free/ vegetarian recipe that can be served with a salad or on top of a bowl of rice (tofu donburi).

Block of firm tofu (500 - 700g), preferably GM free
2 tablespoons plain flour
1 tablespoon nanami-togarashi (Japanese seven spice)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (for frying)
Chopped spring onion and grated ginger (to garnish)

1. Remove the packaging and water from the block of tofu and place on a chopping board.

2. Cut into thick slices (about 1 inch thick).

3. To remove excess water wrap each slice in kitchen towel, place on a large plate and set aside for about 5 minutes. Remove the wet kitchen towel and wrap in kitchen towel again. Set aside for a further 5 minutes depending on the type of tofu (you may need to do this for 10 minutes each time).

4. Mix the flour and nanami-togarashi on a large plate.

5. Remove the kitchen towel from the tofu and coat each tofu slice in the flour mix.

6. Heat vegetable oil in a non-stick frying pan on high heat.

7. Gently place the tofu slices on the pan and fry for a few minutes. Once nicely browned turn and fry on the other side for a few minutes.

8. Top with chopped spring onion and grated ginger then drizzle a little soy sauce over the tofu.

- Put a heavy weight (e.g. book) on the tofu slices when wrapped in kitchen towel. This will help drain the water from the tofu in less time!
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