This much I know: Kevin Dundon, Chef

My idea of misery is being in a room with a bank manager.

This much I know: Kevin Dundon, Chef

I don’t turn my phone off often enough. Finding a balance between work and life can be difficult at times. I have business interests in the US too, and therefore have to travel quite extensively, however Catherine is my rock, looking after our children and business in my absence. We do endeavour to have our family meals together when I’m home, it’s a great way to unwind and catch up on the children’s news of the day.

I always wanted to be a chef, I did think about architecture for a while, but my passion for food won through in the end. Setting up Dunbrody House was a very big decision. When Catherine and I first saw Dunbrody we both fell in love with the place instantly, however, we were thinking with our hearts more than our heads. Financially for us it was a huge commitment, as major work was required, but we knew Dunbrody was somewhere special where we could raise a family, have our restaurant and hotel, and now we have our local pub on site too. It has been hard work though.

When I was first asked to cook on TV, I must admit that I didn’t sleep too well the night before — I was used to being unseen in the kitchen. I enjoyed it, didn’t burn the dish but believe like a good wine one’s television appearances improve with age. When I was a child, I was one of the lads, definitely not shy about anything except school work.

My earliest memory is standing on a chair in the kitchen, watching my mum and grandma baking, watching in awe as they prepared delicious meals for the family, always followed by a show stopper dessert.

I am disciplined, I believe to succeed in business you need to be, but it’s also important to know your limits. My Dad told me never to overstretch myself financially, keep an eye on the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves. Sound advice.

The trait I most admire in other people is honesty.

If I could be reborn as someone else for a day I’d like to be Rory McIlroy and I’d like it to be June 19, 2011, the day he won the US Open.

I’d like to see food and nutrition on the national school curriculum, you are never too young to learn about the importance of eating healthily and making the right choices with food. Many parents have to work, and therefore reach for convenience foods due to time constraints, however by cooking from scratch at home we are in control of what our children eat.

For me, happiness is having a happy, healthy family, and time to spend with them.

Besides food, my passion is golf, I wouldn’t say that Rory McIlroy need worry yet though, I recently got Tom (my son) his first set of clubs and am looking forward to taking him out on the driving range.

So far life has taught me not to take anything or anyone for granted, it can all be taken away in a moment.

I’m really excited about my new book which is due out in autumn. This book shows the key ways of cooking with a particular ingredient, from poaching eggs to mastering a soufflé, and includes many techniques, for example, making pastry, and then ways in which to use it.

See Kevin Dundon, in association with SuperValu, at Bloom in the Park, Phoenix Park, on Friday, May 30. Bloom runs from Thursday, May 29 until Monday, June 2, with cookery and craft demonstrations, gardening advice, entertainment and gardening workshops. A family friendly event, kids under 16 go free.

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