Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St.Paddys Day

Well now St. Patrick's Day wouldn't exist if
not for the man himself! But how much do we know about him? Did you know that he spent six years of slavery in Ireland until he escaped and undertook religious training abroad?
Read more about this great man!

Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig is the Gaelic way of expressing a wish that you have all the blessings of St Patrick's Day and the "luck of the Irish" to go with it. There are many humorous explanations for this expression. One comes from the legend of the 'Little People' of the land, know as leprechauns. Finding or catching a leprechaun (who would then give you gold) was a lucky event that could only take place in Ireland ! The Irish are descendants of great Celtic and Viking fighters and invaders. Their natural fighting skills often ensured survival & hence they became known as the 'lucky' people .a classic case of making your own luck ! But then "The Luck of the Irish" may all be legend.

Saint Patricks Day Parades Worldwide, Irish Pubs all around the globe, Fun Runs, Irish Associations, Irish Music Festivals, Irish Names, Irish Dancing Schools,Irish Music Irish Roots, Irish Festivals,Scottish Highland Games USA & Canada, as well as, Scottish Pipes & Drum Bands.

St Patricks Day is for thinking about our Saint as well as a time to think of loved ones across the water.

So, why is it celebrated on March 17th? One theory is that that is the day that St. Patrick died. Since the holiday began in Ireland, it is believed that as the Irish spread out around the world, they took with them their history and celebrations. The biggest observance of all is, of course, in Ireland. With the exception of restaurants and pubs, almost all businesses close on March 17th. Being a religious holiday as well, many Irish attend mass, where March 17th is the traditional day for offering prayers for missionaries worldwide before the serious celebrating begins.

Here is some traditional irish fare done up in it's sunday best !!


May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.


This Traditional Fare / Food Sensitive Recipes Below

Potato Beer Soup

Potato and Beer Soup

2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon garlic
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 stalk diced celery
6 cups boiled diced potatoes
32 ounces beer
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon chicken boullion
64 ounces chicken stock
roux to thicken (click here for our roux tutorial)
4 cups cream
salt and pepper to taste

Serves 10 or more
Sauté garlic in butter for 1 minute, add vegetables and
saute for 3-5 minutes or until tender. Add potatoes and
beer and bring to a boil. Mash potatoes against sides of pot.
Add sugar, stock, boullion and salt and pepper.
Add roux until thick. Add cream, stir and serve.


Fresh Green Bean Salad

Fresh Green Bean Salad

1 pound fresh green beans, ends trimmed
2-3 tablespoons red wine or herb vinegar
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1/2 cup cilantro, coarsely chopped
Instructions: Place the beans in enough water
to cover and cook for about 10-12 minutes, covered,
until the beans are tender but al dente.
Remove and place in a serving bowl.
Whisk together olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper.
Toss the beans with the cilantro and dressing.
Serve warm or at room temperature.


Poached Salmon with Irish Butter Sauce

2 pounds center cut fresh salmon
salt (use 1 tablespoon salt to every 2 pints water)

Irish Butter Sauce:
2 egg yolks , free range if possible
2 teaspoons cold water
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, diced
1 teaspoon lemon juice
flat leaf parsley, fennel leaves and lemon wedges for garnish
1. Choose a saucepan that will barely fit the piece of fish:
an oval cast-iron saucepan is usually perfect.
(If a small piece of fish is cooked in a large pan of water,
much of the flavor will escape into the water, so it is
important to use the smallest saucepan possible.

2. Half fill the saucepan with salted water and bring to a boil.
Put in the piece of fish, bring back to a boil,
cover and simmer very gently for 20 minutes.

3. Turn off the heat and allow the fish to sit in the water while you
make the sauce (do not let sit for more than 20 minutes or so).

4. Put egg yolks in a heavy stainless steel saucepan on low heat or
in a bowl over hot water (double boiler).
Add the water and whisk thoroughly.

5. Add the butter, bit by bit, whisking all the time.
As soon as one piece melts, add the next.
The mixture will gradually thicken,
but if it shows signs of becoming too thick or slightly scrambling,
remove from heat immediately and add a little cold water.
Do not leave the pan or stop whisking until the sauce is made.
If the sauce is too slow to thicken it may be because you are
excessively cautious and the heat is too low.
Increase the heat slightly and continue to whisk until the sauce
thickens to a coating consistency.

6. Add lemon juice to taste.

7. Just before serving, skin the salmon and lay it on a hot serving dish. Garnish with parsley, fennel leaves and lemon wedges and serve with the Irish butter sauce.




Dijon Lamb Chops

4 lamb chops
a teaspoon minced lemon zest
juice of 1/2 lemon
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
1/3 Cup Dijon mustard

lemon slices for garnish
Instructions: Preheat oven to 450°F.

Combine garlic lemon juice parsley and mustard. Press on all sides of the chops and place in a large baking dish that has been coated with cooking spray. Bake for about 15 minutes or until done to your liking. Garnish with fresh lemon slices.




1 pound kale
1 1/2 pound potatoes
8 tablespoons butter
1 cup leeks, finely chopped
salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup onions, finely chopped
1/2 - 3/4 cup light cream
1 tablespoon parsley, finely chopped

Wash, trim, and blanch kale. Drain, gently squeeze out water, and chop finely. Set aside.

In a small skillet, brown the onions in the remaining butter, set aside, but keep warm.

Peel potatoes and boil in salted water. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons butter in a skillet and gently stew the leeks until tender, 5 - 10 min. Add the chopped kale and sauté over high heat, stirring to evaporate excess moisture. Turn the heat to low, add 2 tablespoons butter and slowly cook the leeks and kale for 5 - 10 min. longer. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

When the potatoes are tender, Drain and mash them. Whip in the kale and leek mixture and one teaspoon salt. Heat the cream and gradually beat it in until entire mixture is smooth and creamy, yet firm. Season with salt and pepper. Reheat if necessary and mound in a hot dish.

Make a depression in the center and pour the browned onions and butter in the well until they spill over the side. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.


Chocolate Stout Silk Pie

1 1/2 cups crushed graham crackers
1/3 cup melted butter


12 ounce semi-sweet or bitter-sweet chocolate
24 large marshmallows
1 pinch pinch of salt
2/3 cups stout
1/3 cup evaporated milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon creme de cacao


Preheat oven to 350° F.

Add melted butter to crushed graham crackers and mix until well blended. Using fingers, press crust mixture into bottom and up the sides of a pie pan. Bake crust for about 6 minutes until set. (You can alternatively use a ready made graham cracker crust.)

Place chocolate, marshmallows and salt in a blender. or food processor. Blend until well mixed and chocolate is finely ground.

In two separate saucepans (in order to prevent curdling), heat stout and evaporated milk until very hot, but not boiling.
Pour stout and milk into blender and blend for one minute. Add vanilla and creme de cacao and blend. Pour into the crust and refrigerate overnight. Garnish with whipped cream.


Chocolate Guinness Cupcakes

12 ounces Guinness® stout
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sour cream
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, plus more for garnish
2 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

For the Frosting:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 pound confectioner

cocoa powder for dusting

Makes 24 Cupcakes

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the Guinness®, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Mix in the sour cream.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the cocoa, sugar, flour, and baking soda. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet Guinness® mixture.

Butter 24 muffin tins and divide the batter among the muffin tins.

Bake 25 minutes until risen and set in the middle but still soft and tender. Cool before turning out of the tins.

Make the frosting:
Beat the cream cheese in a bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually Beat in the heavy cream. Slowly mix in the confectioner's sugar.

Top each cupcake with a heap of frosting and dust with cocoa.

Gluten Free St.Patrick's Day Recipes

Manhattan Gluten-Free Food Examiner

Gluten-free St. Patrick's Day with untraditional cabbage and potato dishes

Gluten free dishes for St Patrick's Day are not that hard to come by, but ones you haven't seen a million times before sometimes are. Once again, in the spirit of the holiday, but not necessarily following in tradition's footsteps, are two recipes, one for potatoes and one for cabbage. The photo above depicts the beginning stages of a delicious mushroom potato parmesan pie. You could easily switch from parmesan to a gooier cheese like mozzarella, and you would still enjoy this. The fresh thyme sprinkled through the layers adds something special to the recipe. More photos of the process and final result of this recipe can be found in the slideshow.

Here's a cabbage recipe that's well off the beaten path for St Patrick's Day, but it's included because it goes so well with corned beef. It is what it appears to be, Indian curried cabbage straight out of the subcontinent's culinary tradition. It's great warm. room temperature, or chilled, so it's the perfect dish to contribute to a St Patrick's pot luck, since there's no worry about reheating or keeping chilled. Freezes well, too, in case you'd like to prepare a large amount in advance.

Photos © Bernice Mast

Despite its ruby look, this soup contains a large amount of green cabbage. In fact, the cabbage is a big part of what provides its delightfully crunchy texture. A mix of roasted beets, onions and garlic and steamed carrots in a vegetable bouillon spiked with oregano and thyme are the other ingredients. The topping: Greek yogurt with chopped walnuts. Food for the gods, or Saint, as the case may be.

Local note: Green cabbage is on sale this week at Met Foods. Check other local markets over the weekend, as more sales should appear the closer we are to the holiday.
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Gluten-free untraditional St Patrick's Day foods
More About: Irish

Gluten-free St. Patrick's Day with spinach lime salad

March 17, 12:31 AMManhattan Gluten-Free Food ExaminerBernice Mast

Photos © Bernice Mast

Is it Irish or just green? If you're in a St Patrick's Day mood, then of course it's Irish--and healthy, too! Spinach salad, tomatoes, spanish olives, mexican pepitas, chopped fresh parsley are dressed in a sparkly lime vinaigrette. What could be more celebratory? (See the slideshow for more pictures and a look at a cubanelle pepper shamrock.)

Lime Vinaigrette

Whisk together:

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp ground cumin

2T fresh lime juice

4T olive oil

salt and pepper to taste.

Here are more St Patrick's Day foods.

St Patrick's Day green food: spinach lime salad