St. Patrick’s Day, held on the 17th of March, was created to commemorate the patron saint of Ireland. The day is also used to celebrate Irish heritage and culture along with the arrival of Christianity in Ireland. Celebrations are held all over the world, with the most notable celebrations being held in Ireland and the USA. To celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, people hold and attend festivals and parades. People are also encouraged to wear green attire, adorn shamrocks, and eat and drink to their hearts content. Since we must all stay as safe as possible until the virus has passed, we will not be able to attend parades and festivals this year. However, this does not mean that we cannot celebrate with those in our households! One of the best ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at home is by throwing a St. Patrick’s Day feast!
Eating and drinking is a large part of St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. This is because St. Patrick’s Day falls during the solemn religious observance of Lent. The church wanted St. Patrick’s Day to be a day of celebration and, therefore, the Lenten laws on eating and drinking were lifted for this day only. This, in turn, propagated the tradition of indulging in food and drink on St. Patrick’s Day. Here are some of our favourite Irish recipes that you can use to make your own Irish feast.
Boxty AKA “Poor man’s bread” or “Traditional Irish Potato Cakes.”
Boxty is a traditional Irish potato pancake, usually associated with the Irish counties of Cavan, Donegal, Leitrim, and Mayo to name a few. There are many variations on the recipe, but the main ingredient is finely grated, raw potatoes and all versions are served fried. Boxty is traditionally made into a large pancake shape and then cut into quarters before serving to create triangle shaped pieces.
You can either serve your boxty as a part of a “Full Irish Breakfast” (eggs, bacon, sausage, beans, and boxty) or on it’s own with a garnish of spring onions and tomatoes with some dips on the side.
There is an old Irish rhyme about Boxty, and it goes:
“Boxty on the griddle, boxty on the pan. If you can’t make boxty, you’ll never get a man!”
Irish stew is a simple, yet effective recipe, great for a warm and cosy main course. Instead of a common stew made with beef, the Irish stew is made with lamb or mutton and has a refined ingredients list to make it hearty and not heavy. However, the exact recipe for an Irish stew has not been standardised over time and everyone has a different idea of what a true Irish stew is. Whether you are an Irish stew purist or not, it is a great way to use up left over cuts of meat and vegetables such as potatoes, onions, and parsley and warm the cockles of your heart.
According to the Irish Whiskey Museum in Dublin, the Irish coffee was invented in 1947 in a busy airport restaurant by Joe Sheridan. Joe was a young chef and was in charge of the restaurant in question. He noticed that many of his guests found the weather in the area very unpleasant and many of them complained about the cold. Therefore, Joe decided to create a drink that would warm up his guests and make the visit to Ireland more pleasurable. That drink was the famous Irish Coffee. The ingredients of the drink were simple, Irish whiskey, coffee, brown sugar, and whipped cream. Nowadays, the drink is usually consumed some time in the morning as a treat on special occasions, or after dinner as a sweet treat.
Irish Apple Cake
Irish Apple Cake is a moist and tender cake filled to the brim with apples. It is a simple recipe, yet it is full of flavour which is a common trademark in traditional Irish dishes.
When first popularised, Irish apple cakes were steamed in pots beside an open fire and were mainly made with crab apples. Crab apples were readily available in Ireland, so they were a cheap and tasty filling. However, nowadays standard cooking apples are usually used, but if you want the authentic taste and flavour of an Irish apple cake why not try using crab apples?
We hope this article has given you some ideas for your St. Patrick’s Day feast and will help you celebrate at home this year. If you do have a St. Patrick Day’s feast with your family, household, or client, please send us some pictures as we would love to see them. Until then, keep safe and have a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day.