The luck of the Irish can be yours in the kitchen this St. Patrick’s Day if you prepare a traditional Irish meal for your family and friends! Irish cooking is wholesome and hearty and can easily be adapted to American palates. Here is an idea for a complete Irish dinner that would work well for your immediate family or can be adapted to “buffet” service for St. Paddy’s Day party!
Main Dish: Corned Beef Casserole
Corned beef was not a traditional Irish food as many suppose, but was a favorite of Irish immigrants to the United States, making it one of the most American of Irish dishes. Corned beef can be bought at the store or prepared at home. My suggestion is to buy it unless you have some experience with the corned beef process, and save your experiments for another time!
Corned Beef Casserole
8-ounce package of uncooked elbow macaroni
1/2 pound diced processed American cheese
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
12 ounce can corned beef
2 cans condensed cream of chicken soup
2 cups milk
10-ounce package of frozen green peas, thawed
Mix all ingredients and pour into a greased 9 x 13 pan. Refrigerate overnight then take out and allow to come to room temperature before baking. Bake at 375 degrees for one hour.
Side Dish: Garlic Mashed Potatoes
3 lbs Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 cup heavy cream
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup unsalted butter
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Boil potatoes until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and mash with cream, smashed garlic and butter. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Dessert: Blarney Stone Bars
1/2 cup softened butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup quick-cook oats
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup English toffee pieces
1/3 cup chopped pecans
Green food coloring
Vanilla frosting (to save time, purchase ready-made)
Cream butter and sugar until fluffy, then beat in eggs, milk and vanilla. Gradually add mixture of flour, oats, baking powder and salt. Fold in toffee and pecans. Spread into greased 9-inch baking pan and bake at 350 for 24 minutes. Cook and front with tinted green frosting, then cut into squares.
Your family or guests will love this hearty St. Patrick’s Day feast!