Karen and Mick travel the country for great food and community projects for RTÉ’s ‘GROW COOK EAT’ Series 2


TV series ‘GROW COOK EAT’ presented by the founder of Grow It Yourself otherwise known as GIY, Michael Kelly and the GIY Head of Community Development Karen O’Donohoe is set to return to our TV screens each Wednesday evening from March 13th for seven weeks on RTÉ at 8.30pm.

During the series Karen and Mick visit some incredible projects and commercial growers across the country, these include a Brussels Sprouts Grower in North County Dublin, a Social Eating Programme in Educate Together National School in Tramore, Waterford, a large scale water harvesting project in Kilbarrick Fire Station, Dublin, Mahon Point Farmers Market in Cork, Mushroom Growers and Food Family enthusiasts in Wexford and a Food Waste Project at Kelly’s Hotel Rosslare.

The food-growing experts focus on sharing knowledge on how to successfully plant and grow onions, pumpkins, sweetcorn, courgettes, kale, beans and chillis for all garden or container shapes and sizes.

Throughout the series Chef Katie Sanderson takes the freshly grown produce and shares a variety of delicious easy to follow recipes for seasonal dishes including Pumpkin with creme fraiche, Peanut Rāyu, coriander, chilli & spring onion, Sweetcorn fritters with tamarind and Chipotle yoghurt and lots of lime, Courgette Carpaccio with parmesan, walnut and crispy caper berries, Gnocchi with kale broth & cais na tire Cheese, Green bean bruschetta with peppery ricotta and lemon honey, and Indian chilli pickle, tamarind sauce, Yoghurt & Popadums.

Commenting on the upcoming series Karen and Mick say they are excited to showcase what they call ‘truly inspirational’ food projects from all across the country. “It was always our intention with this series to showcase the people behind as many truly inspirational food projects and businesses as possible across the country. We are lucky to work with many of these groups through GIY and it is a delight to be able to share their stories and introduce the family businesses that grow the vegetables we love on this series of GROW COOK EAT.”


The presenting duo also say that once again the food growing advice and tips are easy to follow and can be applied to growers and growing spaces of all shapes, makes and sizes. The second series stays true to its down to earth, give it a go approach to food growing whilst highlighting some serious issues such as food waste, plastic packaging and the decline of the Irish commercial vegetable grower. Michael Kelly says, “This year focused on some firm household seasonal favourites and one slightly more ambitious vegetable just to keep us on our toes! We hope as many people as possible join in planting and growing their produce in tandem with the show’s airing this year too.”

Karen O’Donohoe says, “We also have some great practical advice around dealing with every grower’s enemy the slug, the five steps to preparing your garden for winter and how to mix edible and ornamental plants to make the most of your garden space. And of course, container growing is back because we want to encourage people to grow as much as they can wherever they can including their balcony or windowsill.”


There were certainly some thrills and spills behind the scenes of the series 2 filming with a heatwave and drought to contend with during the summer plus a major spill for presenter Karen O’Donohoe who filmed a good part of the series on crutches having ruptured her Achilles Tendon and underwent surgery on the first day of filming! Running to Container Corner at speed in wellies to get a head start on growing pumpkins was not Karen’s best idea but regardless the ‘show went on’ and Karen got at least one wellington boot stuck into ensuring the rest of the filming stayed on track.


‘GROW COOK EAT’ is a very practical series, aimed at helping people with little or no knowledge of growing their own food. 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 8.30pm on RTE until April 24th; the show is sponsored by Bord Bia and StopFoodWaste.ie. For further details, the veg growing guides, lots of extra recipes and more info on each episode visit http://growcookeat.ie/