My brother’s birthday just so happens to also be St. Patrick’s Day. There isn’t a year that goes by where his cakes, parties, and gifts, are always green, Irish themed, and more often than not, a little out of hand. Despite my family obligation to celebrate this day every year, it seems to be that many people, Irish or not, birthday or not, take the opportunity to dress in green, eat pub fare, drink Guinness or whiskey or both, and celebrate the opportunity to really, well, celebrate. When it comes down to it, everyone seems to be a little bit Irish when March 17th rolls around.
Named St. Patrick’s Day after an Irish priest, it is meant to be a day of feasting and celebration of all things Irish. In preparing for Sundays hours of “feastivities”, try one of these mainstays of the Irish diet or dishes that can be enhanced with a little Irish love.
Irish brown soda bread: A traditional Irish gem that, unlike yeast-rising breads, doesn’t take forever to make. Instead you can enjoy this delicious quick bread with soup or stew in no time!
Guinness-battered fish and chips: The beer acts as a yeast activator for the gluten in the flour and gives the crust that extra light, yet crunchy exterior texture.
Turkey, sweet potato stew: Try adding Guinness to stews like this one in order to create more depth, flavor, and richness to the body of the broth.
Love whiskey and chocolate? Try the combination in this chocolate-whiskey cake. Adding a spirit gives the cake a great, moist texture, and the toasted caramel notes of the whiskey compliment the chocolate exquisitely.
Or maybe you're more of the Guinness and vanilla type? Try this Guinness and vanilla float!
This fancy rendition of Irish colecannon on FoodRepublic.com uses Kale for the cabbage component, and has a tangy twist with the addition of creamy goat cheese.
Shepard’s pie: originally a peasant dish, made with tasty ground lamb, vegetables and topped with a buttery mashed potato crust, is the perfect comfort food to keep you going all day Sunday.
Sage as a flavoring agent: Sage is a popular Irish herb, and compliments several different foods and flavors.
Try it in these dishes:
It's even delightful when added to cocktails like this Sláinte whiskey-based cocktail.
There’s no doubt that any one of these delicious Irish inspired dishes will keep you warm, full and fueled for wherever March 17th may take you.