Celebrity chef Shane Smith from Lavey.

Delicious advent calendar coming your way... virtually

This is shaping up to be a Christmas like no other in households all over the country, enhanced by the quality food and ingredients available from local food producers.

To whet appetites for what’s in store this festive season, celebrity Chef Shane Smith will be putting some of his delicious recipes and video demonstrations on his online platforms, utilising the very best ingredients local food producers have to offer.

His ‘Virtual Advent Calendar’ initiative commences tomorrow (Wednesday), November 18, and will run daily until December 12.

“This will give people time to buy the products online or in store before Christmas. After the 25th day, there will be a huge hamper giveaway, which will include products from all 11 producers - a beautiful gift for someone right before Christmas,” explained Shane of the collaboration.

All will be shared on Shane’s social media accounts including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and the producers involved will also be sharing the posts on their various online platforms.

The tastiest virtual Advent Calendar of 2020! . I'm so excited to announce that I have teamed up with 11 of the country'...

Posted by Chef Shane Smith onTuesday, 17 November 2020

The aim is also to promote 25 beautiful recipes and increase sales for all these local producers involved.

All the recipes have already been created by the Lavey chef and the dishes prepared. An image of each recipe will be released each day to make up the advent calendar. For instance, on day three, Shane will be releasing a recipe featuring Coole Swan and also directing traffic to their website.

“It has been a fun project for me to undertake and it was great the hear the various producers’ stories. My message is to cook your meals with food from local producers,” said Shane.

He came up with this idea when brain storming some festive ideas that would work during these Covid times.

“Given the year that is in it, I decided to determine what would work online and an advent calendar is something that people give as a gift at Christmas. I thought it would be a fun approach to promoting small producers from Cavan and all over the country,” explained Shane.

Cavan producers involved in the project include: Aine’s Chocolates, Barry John’s Sausages, Coole Swan and Moran’s Jam. Two of the biggest brands featured are Kerrygold and Gem Foods and the remainder are more Artisan producers.

“I have been working on it for the past seven weeks here at home in Dublin,” revealed Shane of the preparations involved.

Shane also explained that he will also be talking about the producers.

“I will be telling the story about the producers and there will be pictures and some video relating their background story and how they came up with their business ideas. I will also be showcasing where you can buy their products,” he noted.

Shane further revealed that Moran’s Jam have come up with a special edition jam for Christmas and that will be available online.

“Barry John Sausages have come up with some beautiful flavours and particularly gorgeous ones coming up for Christmas,” he added.

Producer list: Moran’s Jam Cavan; St Tola Goats Cheese, Clare; Butlers Organic Eggs, County Carlow; Roll It Pastry, County Meath; Kerrygold; Donegal Rapeseed Oil, County Donegal; Gem Pack Foods, Dublin; Aine’s Chocolates, County Cavan; Coole Swan Liqueur, County Meath; O’Hanlon fresh herbs, County Wicklow; Barry John’s Sausages, County Cavan.