Tuesday, August 13, 2013

A Seedy Story

Nick and Inga during first
brainstorm session
A couple of months ago, we heard there was to be a show during our local Kilkenny Arts Festival, and this show was to feature quite a large group of crafts people from the area called MADE.  Nick doesn’t usually have time to join into such nice events but this year, as it was the 50th anniversary of an organization promoting Irish design (Kilkenny Design Workshops), he decided to meet the challenge.  And to make the effort appropriate, he and Susan decided to make it a team effort: they began a collaborative project with Inga Reed, a fabulous jeweler living in Kilkenny.

Inge’s dream idea and wish was for Nick to create some charming, small pots for her to use when she enjoys her dukkah.  Her what?  Yes, we all asked: what on earth is dukkah? Inga, being completely offhand, replied that Oh, you know, that Morrocan seed mixture that you dump your bread in….
So, Nick got to work on creating Inga’s dream and Susan got to work on DUKKAH!

Various versions and recipes exist and it is such a simple concept, that you can make it as complicated and as personal as you wish. It isn’t even Morrocan per se, but considered more of an Egyptian delicacy.  Dukkah is made from:

The Dukkah in its own pot with friend oil pot nearby.
            Nuts, 8 parts (usually hazelnuts, shelled 
            and lightly roasted)
            Sesame seeds, 8 parts
            Cumin seed, 1 part
            Coriander seed, 1 part
            Fennel seed (I part, and optional)
            White peppercorns 1 part

You could also add some chili flakes if you’re that sort of person, and definitely add salt to taste.  The process is to pan roast all the seeds lightly and then bung them into a food processor with the nuts for a short amount of time.  My hint would be to use a heavy iron skillet and do smallish batches, turning constantly so they don’t burn.

Dukkah, thank you Inga, is one of the most delicious treats ever!  Take your favorite bread, dump it into good olive oil, than head over to the dukkah and dip away. Heaven.

Fresh Dukkah pots out of the 
kiln, on the way to Inga.

Well, two months on, it’s all coming together and it has been a beautiful and delicious trip!  Even the dukkah. And so, when the exhibition opens next week, everyone will be able to see Nick’s tiny, exquisite engine turned, basalt dishes, surmounted by Inga’s intriguing silver work. A truly cooperative effort from two talented people who would never usually do such items.  When  svelte and beautiful Inga is asked at the exhibition why the dishes are so tiny, I’m sure she’ll say because ‘dukkah is sooo fattening!’

1 comment:

  1. That's a lovely story and the recipe sounds delishious, thanks for sharing.