By Mea Donnelly
Ah, St. Patrick’s Day. Contrary to popular belief, for us Irish, prior to the late 20th century drinking was illegal on the holiday in the homeland. It was a holiday for celebrating luck and eating really good food. And by good food, I of course am talking about traditional Irish dishes. So if you want to go into the kitchen and have a real St. Patrick’s Day, use one of these two recipes.
Irish Soda Bread
What you will need:
- 4 cups of whole wheat flour
- 1 cup of bread flour
- 1/3 cup of rolled oats
- 1 teaspoon of baking soda
- 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 1/2 cups of buttermilk
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Mix everything but the buttermilk together. Slowly pour in the buttermilk until dough is formed. Knead the dough lightly. Divide dough into four pieces, mark each piece with an X on a baking sheet and put into the oven. Bake until golden brown.
Irish Beef Stew
You will need:
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
- 2 pounds of beef (cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes)
- 1 pound of carrots (cut into 1-inch chunks)
- 6 large potatoes
- 1 white onion (in pieces)
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 cups of beef broth
- 1 can of tomato paste
- 1 can or bottle of Irish beer
- 1 tablespoon of cold water
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Toss the beef cubes in flour to coat, and then fry in the hot oil until browned. Place the carrots, potatoes, onion and garlic in a deep pan with a cover. Place the meat on top of the vegetables. Mix together the beef broth and tomato paste and pour into the deep pan along with the beer. Cover and cook on high for 6 hours or low for 8 hours. During the last hour before serving, dissolve the cornstarch in cold water and then stir into the broth. Simmer on the high setting for a few minutes to thicken.
Whether you have soda bread or stew, your St. Patrick’s Day is bound to have some Irish kick to it.