That was abundantly clear yesterday when TV chef Catherine Leyden revealed for him the dark and mysterious art of making scones.
His close encounter with matters culinary took place at TV3 on the set of Ireland AM. Speaking earlier to Mark Cagney on serious topics such as the upcoming referenda and Irish Water, Kenny was immediately whisked away to the TV3 kitchen where flour power was in Leyden’s hands.
Flanked by presenter Alan Hughes, he gazed with wonder at the magic that was about to unfold, while admitting that, while he can just about boil an egg, he never gets time to cook at home.
“No. I could destroy any kitchen. I can cinderise the sausages, or so they tell me at home.”
It’s just as well then that his wife, Fionnuala, is a very good cook.
“She loves cooking. She does a variety of menus. She has a lot of cookery books. You get some very different dishes at times. She’s a great cook.”
Kenny laments that he rarely gets to enjoy a home-cooked meal but says that “this business doesn’t leave you any time to enjoy a regular lifestyle”.
All the while, Catherine Leyden is cooking up a storm, showing how to bake light and fluffy scones. “A nice soft dough is important for a light scone,” she tells Kenny. “Not too light and not too heavy. “
The Taoiseach looks like this is all foreign territory to him, as he gazes at the culinary masterpiece in the making.
“I’m going to get Catherine into the Dáil,” says Kenny, clearly impressed by Leyden’s magic touch, while explaining that he enjoys a healthy breakfast.
“Porridge at 6.30 every morning. I put in a few raisins, banana, or whatever. It sets you up for the day.”
Surveying the scone he has been offered, he tells the TV chef: “this looks very light and airy, Catherine. I could see the way you mixed it up. Did you make the raspberry jam as well, Catherine?”
Kenny is no stranger to jam, although he is more a devourer than a provider. “There’s a lovely lady down in Kildare, Marjorie, who sends me a few pots of raspberry jam every year. She comes up on the train with them, so, Marjorie, if you’re watching, thanks for that.”
Offered some scones for his political colleagues, the Taoiseach arches his shoulders, exhibiting his steely resolve: “You have to starve the Cabinet. We don’t want them going round over-fed.”