West Limerick’s Sharon Noonan produced her first radio documentary with the support of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.
Originally from Ballymena in Co Antrim, the presenter of the weekly food and drink radio show and podcast, Best Possible Taste, was inspired to make the 43 minutes piece titled “Devlins’ Yellowman – A Taste of Childhood” after enjoying the candy during a visit to one of Co Limerick’s most prestigious restaurants.
“My parents were down from the North for a few days and we went to the Mustard Seed in Ballingarry for dinner,” explained Sharon. “Yellowman was listed on the petits fours menu and I was very intrigued as my family used to make it using a secret recipe to sell at the Lammas Fair in Ballycastle. What was served was what I know as honeycomb and after asking Chef John Fitzmaurice about it, I started wondering about why honeycomb had adopted the name of Yellowman.”
Its launch coincides with the Northern Ireland Year of Food & Drink celebrations and the Lammas Fair 2016 on August 29th and 30th. The documentary features an interview with Tony Devlin (Sharon’s father) at the site in Ballymena where Devlins’ Yellowman was made for many years. The Devlin name is synonymous with the fruit industry in Northern Ireland and Tony along with his wife Elizabeth had a number of shops in Ballymena for many years before retiring.
John Fitzmaurice, who is now head chef at Moloughney’s in Dublin, appears in the radio documentary and there are visits to the Lammas Fair, Glastry Farm, home of the award winning Yellowman Icecream and Aunt Sandra’s Candy Factory. One of the documentary’s highlights is a masterclass in making Yellowman with Chef Noel McMeel at Fermanagh’s five star Lough Erne Resort. The Northern Ireland celebrity chef served Yellowman Ice Cream to the world leaders, including President Barack Obama, at the G8 summit when it took place in Fermanagh in 2013.
Sharon was given the secret recipe for Devlins’ Yellowman by her paternal grandmother and great aunt, Eleanor Devlin and Katie Devlin and has fond memories of making and selling it for the Lammas Fair. Does she reveal the recipe during the documentary? To find out visit the Best Possible Taste podcast on sharonnoonan.com where it will be available to listen to from 27 August.