At that time it was really hard to find any ethnic ingredients in Ireland. Even the crappy commercial brands found in supermarkets, those that bare little or no resemblance to the ingredients or produce we would use at home, were hard to get. I used to bribe relatives and friends to bring me stuff when they were coming, I shopped on internet websites and used UPS quite a lot to get packages sent from home. Every time I went to Mexico for the first few years, I would come back with my suitcase emptied of cloths and filled with food. This was quite expensive and totally unsustainable, so eventually I got tired and broke, so I decided to learn the art of substitution (which has probably made wave for a sort of Mex-Eire fusion cuisine in my kitchen). I learned to cook Mexican food with as many Irish ingredients as possible and with the bare minimum of imported items.
|Tomatillos & Jalapenos|
So, as you can see, I no longer stress about finding tortillas, avocados, dried chilies or masa harina. In the meantime, here are the ones I use regularly:
The Cool Chile Company: this is a UK based company. They import and pack all their dried chilies and flour, but they also sell their own bottled salsas, mole pastes and also a few dinner kits. I like their make your own Mole kit, which has all the ingredients needed to make your own mole paste the hard way, they also have a Cuban black bean soup kit. They stock Mexican drinking chocolate, which has a lot of spices in it and it is absolutely lovely! Some of their products are stocked in Fallon & Byrne, but I have not made costs comparisons!
Morton’s of Rathgar: found this one recently thanks to a fellow food blogger recommendation. I tend to make my own chorizo as it is not the same as the chorizo from Spain, but if I’m lazy, I go to Morton’s butcher, Lawlor's at Mortons, and buy their chorizo sausage. It is really good and much closed to what Mexicans would eat.
Mero Mero Market Stall: Gustavo is a Mexican living here for over 20 years. His wife, Theresa, lived in Mexico for a while, so she brought back some recipes and started making them to sell. They make salsas, ketchup (love it!) and bottled chiles. They have a stall at the Temple Bar Food Market where they sell ready-made food and do catering.
|Chayotes / Chow Chow|