Can you believe St. Patrick's day is but a short week away? I don't know about you but I've been wondering what to make in celebration of the special day. I love St. Paddy's Day, not only for the green beer and comfort food, but because it hits during the tail end of winter and promises spring is just around the corner. See you can take the Canadian to the land of perpetual summer but the memories of winter remain intact.
The Big Guy wasn't home for dinner last night so I figured this was the perfect time to talk about menu possibilities for an Irish feast on Saturday, March 17th!
Corned Beef and Cabbage - you can't go wrong with this traditional dish, especially this version which takes a brined brisket and transforms it into a prize winning cut of meat. Best of all, the leftovers are almost better than the original and there's not many things you can say that about!
If you're looking for something different with a slight tip o' the hat to the Irish, try this "Not So Irish Lamb Stew". Made from cubes of lamb, it's loaded with bacon, onion, garlic, shallots and sweetened with carrots and parsnip all in a marsala flavored gravy.
Of course, you could also make a big pot of Shortribs cooked in Porter but please be careful what kind of beer you use since the darker the beer the more bitter your braise may be. I used Black Butte Porter for these flavorful ribs, but if you're determined to use Guinness, be sure to add a little sugar to the mix to ease the taste a tad.
If you love pot pies as much as we do, there are a lot of recipes for them here, but now's the perfect opportunity to make a classic Steak and Guinness Pie. Loaded with onions, garlic, and mushrooms too, this one's really all about the Guinness flavored gravy - oh and the pastry too of course. Don't forget the horseradish either because it makes all the difference in the world!
We all know how important the potato is in the Irish diet and St. Paddy's day is a good time to celebrate the mighty spud in all its glory. Try these fabulous Irish Potato Cakes also known as Boxty on for size. They are a heavy duty tremendously delicious won't go hungry for a week kind of pancakes that are perfect with sausage for a super down home kind of dinner.
There's always the unusual too, like this Mashed Potato Pie. I can't say enough about how good this is and people will absolutely NOT believe that you can make a pie out mashed potatoes either. Loaded up with bacon and cheddar as well as sour cream, cottage cheese and eggs, it is not for the calorie watcher, but oh man is it ever good! Served with a salad for a light lunch or with your favorite meat for dinner the leftovers freeze well and make a perfect breakfast choice topped with an egg.
Whatever you decide, don't forget to tip your hat to the Irish and make St. Patrick's Day extra special for those you love.