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ST. PATRICK'S DAY DINNER

Cream of Potato/Leek Soup
Lamb Stew
Soda Bread
Stuffed Baked Apples
Irish Coffee

       
 

Cream of Potato/Leek Soup
 
3 tablespoons   Kerrygold butter
1 cup EACH   chopped onion and leeks (white part only)
1 cup   chopped celery
4 cups   peeled, diced potatoes (assorted varieties)
4 cups   chicken broth
1   13-oz can evaporated milk
1 tablespoon   cornstarch, dissolved in 2 tablespoons cold water
   Salt & Pepper
   Chopped chives  for garnish

Melt butter in a 4 qt. soup pot or sauce pan. Sauté onion, leeks and celery until onion is transparent. Add potatoes and chicken broth. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered for 30 minutes.

Puree solids and some of the liquid in a food processor and return puree to the  pot or use an immersion blender and puree the vegetables directly in the soup pot.

Add evaporated milk and cornstarch slurry, stirring constantly over low heat for about 10 minutes.  Taste soup and adjust by adding salt and pepper to your liking.

For serving,  garnish with chopped chives

Yield: 6 servings

     
     
   

Lamb Stew

Many years ago I was given this recipe by an Irish neighbor who taught me that Irish Stew did not include carrots, but by all means, if you like carrots in your stew, just add 2 carrots, peeled, and cut into thick slices along with the onions.

 

3 pounds    lamb  (shoulder), cut into 1 ½-inch cubes (dry meat cubes with paper towel)
 4 large   Idaho potatoes, peeled and cut into thick slices
3 medium yellow onions, sliced 1/4-inch thick
2 Tbls.   finely chopped parsley
1 teaspoon   dried thyme PLUS 2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 teaspoon   salt
   Freshly ground black pepper
1½ cups   chicken broth
1½ Tbls.   Kerrygold butter, softened and mixed with 1 tablespoon flour
2 Tbls. finely chopped parsley for garnish

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

In an oven and stovetop proof 6 qt. stock pot or a cast iron dutch oven, brown the lamb cubes lightly in a small amount of vegetable oil. Remove meat and wipe out any remaining oil in the pan.

Lightly butter the interior of the pot.  Arrange a layer consisting of one third of the amount of potatoes, meat, onions. Sprinkle a portion of the thyme and parsley, salt & pepper on each layer.  Repeat layering until all ingredients are used.

Add the chicken broth and cover the pot.  Bring the mixture to a boil on top of the stove. Transfer pot to the heated oven and cook for 1 ½ hours.   Fifteen minutes before the end of the cooking time, you can thicken the juices in the pan with a beurre manie (French term for softened butter and flour mixture) Let the stew cook another 10 minutes.  Remember to remove fresh thyme stems before serving.  Garnish each plate with additional chopped parsley.

Yield: 6 servings

     

Irish Soda Bread

This is the classic buttermilk soda bread with the familiar crumbly texture. The only deviation is the inclusion of golden raisins, which are a luxurious touch.

2 cups   all-purpose flour, scoop measured
2 tablespoons   sugar
1 teaspoon   baking powder
1 teaspoon   baking soda
¾ teaspoon   salt
4 tablespoons   Kerrygold butter, cut into small pieces
½ cup   golden raisins
1 cup   buttermilk

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a baking sheet without sides. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large mixing bowl. Whisk to blend thoroughly. Add the butter and cut in with a knife until them mixture is crumbly, then add the raisins and toss to combine.

2. Make a well in the dry ingredients. Pour in the buttermilk and toss with a fork until the dough hold together. Gather the dough into a ball and roll it around the inside of the bowl to pick up any stray particles. Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead 60 times, sifting on flour if necessary to prevent sticking. Pat the dough into a 9-inch round. Score the round into quarters with the dull edge of a floured chef's knife. Make the marks about 1 ½ inches deep. Transfer the round to the prepared baking sheet and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until lightly browned. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Yield: 1 round loaf

Note:  the use of Kerrygold brand of butter is my variation from the original recipe.

Soda Bread recipe is from  "Judy Gorman's Breads of New England", by Yankee Books, 1988 (sadly out of print - you're lucky if you have a copy!)

     
     
   

Stuffed Baked Apples

6   Apples (Granny Smith, Rome)
1/4 cup EACH   orange marmalade, chopped walnuts, currants
2 cups   apple cider
6 teaspoons EACH   Kerrygold butter and light brown sugar

Heat oven to 375 degrees F.

Wash and core apples.  Using a paring knife, slightly enlarge the cavity of each apple to hold the filling.  Peel the upper half of each apple and place them upright in a baking dish. Fill each cavity with the marmalade mixture. Pour apple cider into the baking dish around the stuffed apples. Dot each apple with a teaspoon of butter and light brown sugar.  Place dish on the middle rack of the oven and bake for  40 - 45 minutes.  Occasionally baste sides of apples with juices in the pan during cooking. Yield: 6 servings

For more about Kerrygold butter click here.

Irish Coffee

Brew your favorite regular coffee to the strength you enjoy.

In a tall glass with a loop handle made specifically for Irish coffee, or other tall insulated glass, pour in 1 ½ oz. of a good quality Irish whiskey like Jameson's. Add a teaspoon of sugar if desired. Fill the glass with the brewed coffee leaving at least a 1-inch space at the top. Stir to combine whiskey and coffee. Carefully pour or spoon on top of the coffee, softly whipped heavy or whipping cream.

Yield: one Irish coffee

 

 

 

 
 
           
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