Grow, Cook, Eat puts foraging the Irish Countryside to the fore this week

The second episode of series 2 of ‘GROW COOK EAT’ is set to air on Wednesday, March 25th and presenter duo founder of GIY Michael Kelly and the GIY Head of Community Development Karen O’Donohoe explore the Irish countryside with some expert food foragers, they share their skills in growing oriental greens and Michael digs deep in the world of composting.

Grow, Cook, Eat puts foraging the Irish Countryside to the fore this week

Photo by Colin Shanahan – DigiCol Photography (c) 2020 –

During this week’s programme Michael and Karen go to battle over Oriental Greens, the trusty heads of Iceberg lettuce are set aside to make room for their exotic cousins: mizuna, rocket and mustard greens. Easy to grow in beds and perfect for containers, the cut-and-come-again greens can be harvested multiple times, making them the ideal beginners’ crop.

While the leaves are growing at GROW HQ, Karen goes to see what nature is growing by itself – picking blackberries, rosehips and much more with Wild Irish Foragers but leaving plenty behind for the birds and bees. In the wilds of County Offaly is a small 5th generation family farm who feel a deep connection with the land, the family forage together and produce award-winning preserves from hand harvest Wild Rosehips, Elderberries, Damsons, Elderflowers, Gorse, Rowanberries, Sloes, Spring Nettles, Blackberries, Honeysuckle, Goosegrass, Clovers to name but a few!

Back at HQ, Michael breaks down the mystery of composting with a simple tutorial that guarantees to keep the mice and rats away.

Chef Katie Sanderson cooks up a delicious bounty of colour, texture and flavours with a mix of greens grown from the garden, this makes the perfect base for an adventurous salad recipe featuring miso tahini dressing, maple pecans and wakame seaweed.

‘GROW COOK EAT’ is a practical series, aimed at helping people with little or no knowledge of growing their own food and encouraging people to engage more with their food choices and the food that they eat. As well as the step-by-step guides to growing vegetables, the series showcases features on water harvesting and improving soil fertility.

The show is anchored at the home of GIY, at Grow HQ in Waterford City and each week the TV show also sees presenters Michael Kelly and Karen O’Donohoe travel to meet and visit expert food producers, chefs, and community food growing projects all across the country, plus delicious menu ideas will be shared weekly by Chef Katie Sanderson.

GROW COOK EAT airs each Wednesday evening at 8.30 pm on RTE until April 24th; the show is sponsored by Bord Bia and For further details, the veg growing guides, lots of extra recipes and more info on each episode visit





About Michael Kelly

Michael Kelly is founder of GIY, a social enterprise that aims to support 100 million people to grow, cook and eat some of their own food for a healthier, more sustainable world by 2030. He is a social entrepreneur, author, TV presenter and hacker grower.

Founded in 2008, this year GIY is supporting 670,000 people to grow, cook and eat some of their own food at home, school, work and in the community, aligned with SDG2. We do that by creating content, events, programmes and products that support citizens, chefs, communities and companies to make more sustainable food choices. We are passionate about the power of food growing experiences to set people on a journey to sustainability and an improved understanding of food and nutrition (‘food empathy’) and work with come of the world’s leading brands including innocent, Energia, AIB and Guinness and philanthropic organisations (Social Innovation Fund, Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, Ashoka, The Community Foundation, The Ireland Funds). GIY employs 28 people, based in Waterford.

In 2016, GIY developed a home for the GIY movement, and an exemplar of a sustainable food business called GROW HQ in Waterford, Ireland. We serve delicious and nutritious homegrown, seasonal food grown in living soil, with a zero food waste ethos. Our homegrown food cafe GROW HQ won national Cafe of the Year 2020 and is one of the Sunday Times’ Top 100 Restaurants in Ireland in 2020.

Michael is co-presenter/producer of GROW COOK EAT, GIY’s TV series which had over 5 million viewers of series 1 and 2 to date. Series 3 is broadcast in March 2020. He has written 4 books about food – the latest of which, GIY’s Know-it-Allmanac, is a kid’s guide to food. He is a member of The Irish Food Writers Guild and a board member at ChangeX. He has written columns on food in The, The Irish Times, The Irish Independent and Food & Wine Magazine.

He is a passionate speaker on the role that food can play in improving our health and the health of this planet and has spoken at the Do Lectures in Wales, Web Summit in Ireland and Fifteen Seconds in Austria. Michael has won awards for his work with GIY from Ashoka, Social Entrepreneurs Ireland and the Arthur Guinness Fund. He was the 2017 Local Food Hero in the Food & Wine Awards.

He lives in Dunmore East with his wife Eilish and two young GIYers.



Karen O’Donohoe

Karen returned to rural Ireland after pursuing a successful career in the UK and completing her MSc in Nutrition, Physical Activity and Public Health. A native of East Cork, her passion for social enterprise, health and sustainability saw her start a GIY Group in her home village of Ladysbridge and then join GIY as a fundraiser for GROW HQ, GIY’s €1.4million national food education centre. Now, as Head of Community Development and member of the Leadership Team, Karen works with a number of GIY’s stakeholders to develop long-term partnerships for maximum impact. Her skills as a presenter and entertaining educator were honed during a successful career in health promotion and community development with the University of Bristol where she represented the University on a number of high profile programmes including Inspire 2012 and Healthy Universities. Founder of The Cottage Market, a community-led market initiative that has been rolled out on a national scale, Karen is passionate about rural regeneration, empowering micro-enterprises and working with communities to create social, environmental and economic success stories.



‘GROW COOK EAT’ is a very practical series, aimed at helping people with little or no knowledge to grow their own food. As well as the step-by-step guides to growing vegetables, this series places a large emphasis on food sustainability and supporting Ireland’s food producers. The TV show airs each Wednesday evening at 7.30 pm on RTE. For further details see

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