Forget your lucky charms: these recipes are magically delicious

Scarf down some classic Irish cuisine for St Patrick’s Day

The problem with St Patrick’s Day is that it always falls during the 40 days of Lent, in which the consumption of meat is prohibited.

This means that of the three traditional recipes below, good Catholics are only permitted to make one of them before Good Friday!

However, the church has been known to make an exception on St Patrick’s Day – with good old bacon and cabbage being the most popular choice.

Potatoes and other veg
Nevertheless, the potato-heavy Colcannon tends to please most Irish diners.

After all, Irish food has been described as falling into three categories: before the potato, after it arrived and after it failed.

And it’s fair to say that over the past 30 years Ireland has really started to capitalise on its abundance of fresh ingredients to fashion something of a culinary revolution.

Stew for Sean

Take the leftover roast and assess the damage. To make a decent Irish stew to feed the family, you’re going to need at least two handfuls of lamb.

Shred every piece of meat, put the bone into a saucepan of water with vegetables, simmer and reduce. The bigger the bone, the better the stock. You might find that you need to top it up with lamb or vegetable stock.

Meanwhile, peel the potatoes and slice them. Add them and any other raw vegetables to the sieved stock and boil them. The great thing about this process is the margin for error.

Overcook them and it’s not a disaster; if anything, it will give the stock more body.

Near the end of the process, add the leftover roast vegetables (chopped), the meat and the peas, and season to taste.

So, while most chefs are by now probably throwing up their arms at the amateurish nature of this recipe, who who honestly cares providing it tastes good. This dish should be completely idiot-proof, not some version dreamed up by a ponce that requires fillet. Bon appétit!

– Leftover lamb roast
– Potatoes, plenty of them
– Peas, frozen
– Lamb stock cube (a vegetable one will do)
– Several carrots, leeks
– Salt and pepper to taste which ensures all the donations go to charity uncut.

Bacon & Cabbage for Briana & Ciara
Simmer the meat (corned beef: 25 minutes per half kilo; bacon: 20 mins/half kilo plus 15 mins).

Allow scum to form and then replace water, adding vegetables once returned to simmer.

Once the meat is cooked, remove and lightly towel to dry it. Discard the vegetables. Retain one cup of broth for later.

Mix the honey, cloves and mustard together and smear over the meat. The meat should then be left for at least 30 minutes, but preferably several hours.

Place meat into a 200-degree oven and roast for half an hour.

As soon as oven door is closed, place shredded cabbage in a saucepan with the cup of broth from the meat and the butter. Stir the cabbage and add pepper and salt. When the liquid has all boiled off, the cabbage is ready.

The dish is often served with mashed potatoes or ‘champ’ (essentially mashed potatoes with some spring onions, served as a mound with a pool of butter in the middle).

Parsley sauce and/or mustard sauce also make good additions.

– Loin of Bacon
– 2 medium-sized, quartered white onions
– 1 stick of celery, 2 large carrots
– 1 small cabbage or ½ large one
– ¼ cup of butter
– ground cloves, salt, and pepper
– teaspoon of honey + wholegrain mustard

Colcannon for Connor
Peel the potatoes and cut them into large chunks. Place them in a medium-sized pot and cover with enough water to leave a few centimetres at the top. Salt lightly and bring the water to a boil on top of the stove. Cook until potatoes are tender. Drain the pan and set aside.

Meanwhile, melt the butter over medium-high heat in another saucepan. Once the butter is completely melted, add the cream and kale or cabbage. Cook until the kale is wilted, stirring occasionally (about three to five minutes).

Then add the green onions and cook a minute further. Combine the greens mixture and the potatoes in the medium-size pot.

Reduce the heat and mash the potatoes into the greens using a potato masher or large fork. Avoid the urge to use an electric mixer as this will make the potatoes too smooth and gluey – you want the potatoes to be soft, but still retain some shape.

Season the dish with salt to your liking, and serve while still hot with a pad of butter in the middle of each serving. Enjoy!

– 2 lbs potatoes
– ¼ cup butter
– 3 cups of kale (or shredded cabbage)
– 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
– 1 cup cream
– Salt and pepper to taste

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