Sunday, November 22, 2009

Raglan Road - Dalkey Duo

This week's Sunday paper had a coupon for cocktail sausages, so of course my mind immediately went to the Dalkey Duo recipe I had been wanting to try.  I have dined at the Raglan Road restaurant at Walt Disney World's Downtown Disney area twice... and I have had the Dalkey Duo... twice :)

The restaurant has a lovely Irish Pub theme and if you dine late enough, there is live Irish music and Irish dancing.  It is very entertaining.  The food is good too. 

I love trying different kinds of beer, so it is nice that they offer a "flight" of beers (actually, several different flights).  That beer tastes mighty fine with this deep fried sausage appetizer. 

Here is the Dalkey Duo in all of its glory:

I love how they present some of the sausages on the forks, and then put extras on the side in a bowl.   It is hard to see here, but there is a little container of mustard sauce in between the bowl and the forks.

I wondered what the word Dalkey meant... was it a type of cooking method or something?  Nope.  It is a town in Ireland.

So, having gotten over my deep-frying fear when I made the Honey Sesame Chicken, I was eager to try this at home.  It is really quite a simple recipe.  Please note that yesterday I finally ordered a new camera, so the next update of this blog will have gorgeous pictures (I'm sure!).  For this one we will have suffer through with shots from my cell phone camera.

First, I began heating my canola oil in a big pot. This should get to about 350 degrees before you start cooking the sausages and it takes a bit of time to get to temperature.

Then, I blended 1 3/4 cups regular flour with 1/2 cup corn flour (masa).

Here is the flour:

And the masa:

Mixed together:

The I add the wet ingredients, 1 1/4 T of whole grain mustard mixed with 1/2 cup of lager.   At least, that is what the recipe said to do. 

Unfortunately, that small amount of liquid mixed with the flour resulted in a paste-like consistancy.  Not what we are looking for in a batter.  So, I ended up pouring about 12 oz of lager into the flour ... just enough to get a pancake-like batter. 

I added a bit of salt and pepper and then started preparing the sausages.  I used Hillshire Farms Lit'l Smokies beef smoked sausages for this recipe (Because that's what my coupon was for!).  The prep couldn't be more simple.  Just coat the sausages with flour.

Then you shake off the excess flour, coat in the batter, and (carefully) place the sausages in the hot oil.

While these sizzled away, I made the delicious mustard dipping sauce.  Now, the name of the dipping sauce is kind of misleading, because the sauce has more mayo in it than mustard, but I guess mayonaisse dipping sauce doesn't sound as appealing.   So, I put 10 T of (light) mayo (ha!) and 7 1/2 T of whole grain mustard in a bowl.  Added the juice of half a lime, a bit of salt and pepper and stirred it up.  Yum.


At this point, the sausages had browned up and I drained them on a plate lined with paper towels.

Then they were ready to eat!

I stuck them on forks as an homage to the restaurant's presentation. 

So, how did they turn out?  They were pretty good.  The batter seemed a little bit soft, so maybe I should have left them in the oil a tad longer.  Also, the sausages I used were small in comparison to the thickness of the batter.  I think that it would have been more like the original if I had used bigger cocktail sausages. 

However, they did taste good and the dipping sauce was delicious.  It makes a lot of sausages, and even with just a salad on the side this was a pretty decadent meal. 

We had a lot of sausages leftover, so I put the extras in a baggie with a paper towel (to absorb any moisture).  Two nights later I decided to heat them up in the oven... on a metal cooling rack placed over a baking sheet... so the heat goes all the way around the sausages.  And guess what.  They tasted better than the first night.  They were nice and crispy and the dipping sauce benefited from having time for the flavors to meld in the refridgerator. 

So, knowing how well they reheated, I think that this is a great dish to serve at a party.  Do the bulk of the work the day before, then just reheat on the baking sheet/cooling rack combo for about 10 minutes before you want to serve.  Perfect!

Raglan Road charges about $10.50 for this appetizer meant for two.  After buying the sausages, mustard and beer I probably spent about $5 (plus pantry items).  Although I actually had to spend more money since I had to buy a 6 pack of beer.  So, yes mine was cheaper, and I had more sausages, but the restaurant price isn't bad.   And the beer didn't go to waste :)

Oh, and a comment about the beer I used.  I probably should have been authentic and used an Irish lager, but I found Karl Strauss lager in my supermarket and I definitely wanted to buy it.  It is a San Diego beer that is served at Disney's California Adventure park and I have always enjoyed it there.  It is really good.

If you would like to try the Dalkey Duo at Raglan Road at Walt Disney World, or taste a refreshing Karl Strauss beer at Disney's California Adventure, contact me at and I can make it happen :)


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Eating around the Disneyland Resort...

This is a different kind of post for me.  Instead of cooking a Disney recipe, I am going to review some of the foods I have eaten at Disneyland/California Adventure over the past few weeks.

Part of my job as a Disney Travel Consultant is of to be informed about all things Disney.  Since I live fairly close to Disneyland and California Adventure, I go to the parks once a week to research all aspects of the resort, and to do Tweets for our Twitter friends.  It is really fun, and I have the ambitious goal to try everything that the Disneyland Resort has to offer...  including the food.

Everyone has their favorite Disney treats, for example, I LOVE Dole Whip Floats.  I could eat them every week, but I have decided that I need to branch out and try new foods each visit.

I will start with with my visit on October 9th.  Disneyland was very crowded this day, so I decided that I would just grab lunch from a food cart.  Unbelievably, I had never had one of those huge turkey legs... and I knew that people raved about them.  From the number of people I saw walking around with those Flintstone-era turkey legs, I figured they had to be good.  So, I ordered one from a cart near Big Thunder Mountain with a bottle of Diet Coke and I sat down to a wonderful view of the Rivers of America.

Here is the leg:

And the view:

The turkey leg was very good.  The sticky coating took me by surprise, but it was very flavorful and there was a ton of meat on the leg.  Too much for one person, really.  I couldn't finish it.

That is one of the issues I do run into at Disney... too much food for a single person.  Since I often do my weekly visits by myself, I end up wasting food or just stuffing myself.  It is nice to have a friend to split items, and then you aren't too full to eat a fun snack later :)

Later on I did find more room in my tummy for my favorite snack... Dole Whip Float!  Yes, I know I said that I was branching out, but I figure that I can fit one Dole Whip Float into my rotation.  It will be my last for awhile. The Tiki Juice Bar was so busy that the Dole Whip line looked like it should be for a ride.  Then, when I got up to the counter I had to wait another 5 minutes because the machine had overheated!  I finally got my Float and I was happy.

I love pineapple, so I love the intensely sweet juice with the more subtle pineapple flavor of the ice cream.  The texture is very light and smooth and the whole thing is just very refreshing.   Thumbs up!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

50s Prime Time Cafe S'mores

My sister and I had these S'mores when we visited Walt Disney World last May.  They are available at the 50s Prime Time Cafe, but since we didn't have a reservation we decided to order them from the adjacent bar, the Tune-In Lounge.  It is great to know that if you can get a seat at the bar you can order from the full Prime Time menu.  Our bartenter/waitress was really nice too.

We each had one of their fancy cocktails and shared this dessert.  Too bad that the S'mores looked so good that we just started eating right away and forgot to take a picture.  Here is a picture of our drinks... Dad's Electric Lemonade and Grandma's Picnic Punch. 

I love the glowing ice cubes!

So, the recipe for the S'mores is really easy.  So easy that I can't believe that I haven't made them in my kitchen before. 

First I placed graham crackers (I used lowfat.. which is so funny since these things drip with chocolate, but every little bit helps) on the covered broiler pan.  Topped the crackers with Hershey chocolate bar squares (a good use for my leftover Halloween chocolate bars).  Then big marshmellows.

I then put them under the broiler and kept a close watch on them.  They browned up in less than 2 minutes, so you want to make sure you are there to take them out as soon as they are done. 

Then I just plated them and gave it an artistic squirt of chocolate syrup, just like they do in WDW.

Ok, they might not look just as pretty as they do in WDW, but they were very yummy.  The 50s Prime Time Cafe charges $4.79 for this dessert, and I made two servings which would go for $9.58.  The full packages of the ingredients that I needed for this recipe cost less that this, and of course I have plenty of crackers, marshmellows, etc leftover for future recipes.  So, considering how little effort this took, it is a no-brainer to make these at home!

If you do want to go to Walt Disney World to try the original, contact me at and we will help you plan a magical vacation!