A Tasty Journey Through 'Ireland’s Ancient East'

I recently spent 10 days visiting “Ireland’s Ancient East,” a touring region tapping 5,000 years of history in the south and eastern area of the country. Described as a touring region rather than a specific route, it was designed to offer a "relaxing, compact journey of discovery" stretching from the Boyne Valley through the Midlands and down to East Cork. Launched in 2015 as a follow-up to the popular west coast “Wild Atlantic Way,” a journey here has no fixed length, no beginning or end, and visitors can enter at any point and explore sites reflecting four periods in Ireland’s history at their leisure. I highly recommend the region, not only for its history and scenery but, of course, for its food. I found wonderful artisan products all along the way, including Brookfield Farm Wild Honey in Tipperary. Try this recipe for your next Sunday brunch and think beautiful thoughts of Ireland.



1 pink grapefruit

2 blood oranges

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

1 teaspoon light brown sugar

1 teaspoon fresh thyme

1 cup ricotta cheese

2 tablespoons wild honey, plus more for serving

8 slices rye sourdough bread

Sea salt, for sprinkling


     1. Heat broiler to High. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

     2. Peel grapefruit and oranges; slice into segments. Arrange citrus segments in a single layer on prepared pan. Drizzle with a little olive oil; sprinkle with sugar. Broil fruit 4 inches from heat source for about 5 minutes, or until edges are golden brown. Remove from broiler; sprinkle with thyme.

     3. In a small bowl, combine ricotta and honey.

     4. Brush slices of sourdough with olive oil. Arrange on a baking sheet; broil for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn bread over. Spread with ricotta mixture; broil for 2 to 3 minutes until ricotta is lightly browned and bubbling.

     5. Transfer bread slices to a serving platter. Arrange citrus slices on top; drizzle with additional honey and olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt; serve immediately.

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Tags: Cooking, Desserts, Irish Kitchen, Irish cooking, Meals, Recipes


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