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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

ST PATRICK'S DAY FEAST!!!

HAPPY ST PATRICK'S DAY!



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I'm not Irish; nor am I even Catholic, but, St Patrick's Day (aka any excuse to enjoy some good food) is a fun reason to celebrate life with some outstanding food, family and friends.  And it certainly can be more than just drinking some green beer!  And I always thought that corned beef and cabbage sounded boring - boiled beef and smelly cabbage.  Boy, was I wrong!  This menu will change your mind about St Patrick's Day/Irish food forever!

SMOKED SALMON TOASTS
GUINNESS GLAZED CORNED BEEF 
SAUTEED CABBAGE
IRISH BROWN BREAD
PISTACHIO CUPCAKES

DRINK - GUINNESS (of course!) - or a glass of good Sancerre

MANDATORY LEFTOVER MEAL:
REUBENS!

SMOKED SALMON TOASTS WITH MUSTARD BUTTER
(Adapted from Food and Wine)
Food and Wine
These little tidbits are sooooo good, and the best part is - they take about 5 minutes to put together! I loved them so much, that the next time I was at the store, I bought the ingredients and made them again! That combination of smoked salmon, dill and lemony spread - OMG!

1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 TBSP Dijon mustard
1 TBSP grainy mustard
1/2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
2 TSBP chopped dill
Salt
Freshly ground pepper
1 baguette, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 pound thinly sliced smoked salmon
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Preheat the broiler and position a rack 6 inches from the heat. In a bowl, beat the butter with the Dijon and grainy mustards, lemon zest and 1 tablespoon of the dill and season with salt and pepper.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Spread the baguette slices on a large rimmed baking sheet and broil until golden and crisp, ~ 1 1/2 minutes per side. Let cool.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Spread the toasts with the mustard butter, top with the smoked salmon and arrange on a platter. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon of dill and serve.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
So yummy....

GUINNESS GLAZED CORNED BEEF
(Adapted from Closet Cooking)
Closet Cooking
1 4 pound corned beef in pickling liquid and spices
1 bottle/can (12+ ounces) Guinness or other Irish stout
1 small onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 TBSP grainy mustard
1 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper to taste
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Place the corned beef along with the pickling spices, onion and garlic in a slow cooker/crock-pot with the fat layer on top, pour in the Guinness.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Cook on low until fork tender, ~ 8-10 hours.
Set the corned beef aside, strain the solids from the Guinness and juices.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Place the liquid into a large sauce pan, add the brown sugar, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, bring to a boil reduce the heat and simmer to reduce by half, about 10 minutes.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Cut the fat layer from the corned beef.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Glaze the beef with the Guinness glaze, and bake in a preheated 400 degree F oven until the glaze starts bubbling, about 10-15 minutes.  Let rest for 10 minutes or so and slice thinly.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Serve with the reduced sauce on the side.

SAUTEED CABBAGE 
(Adapted from Food Network)
Food Network
1 small head white cabbage, including outer green leaves (2 1/2 pounds)
2 TBSP unsalted butter
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Cut the cabbage in half and, with the cut-side down, slice it as thinly as possible around the core, like you were making coleslaw.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Discard the core. Melt the butter in a large saute pan or heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the cabbage, salt, and pepper and saute for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage is tender and begins to brown. Season, to taste, and serve warm.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
IRISH BROWN BREAD
(Adapted from Food and Wine)
Food and Wine
This bread looks so yummy and - - - no yeast!  Should be a snap to make.

3 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Butter an 8-by-5-inch metal loaf pan.
In a large bowl, whisk both flours with the baking soda and salt.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
In a small bowl, whisk the buttermilk with the egg; stir into the dry ingredients with a wooden spoon until a rough dough forms.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and knead a few minutes until smooth. Form the dough into a loaf and put it in the prepared pan.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Bake for about 50 minutes, until the bread has risen about 1/2 inch above the rim of the pan. Once unmolded, the loaf should sound hollow when tapped on the bottom. Let cool to warm or room temperature, then slice and serve.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Here's another Irish Soda Bread recipe from Closet Cooking.  It makes a smaller loaf and includes rolled oats and again, no yeast.

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup rolled oats
1 cup buttermilk

Mix the flours, baking soda, salt and rolled oats in a bowl.

Mix in the buttermilk and form a dough.

Shape the dough and place it on a baking sheet or in a loaf pan.

Bake in a preheated 375 degrees F oven for 40 minutes (the top should be golden brown).


ST PAT'S CUPCAKES
catebogue
I've been making these cupcakes for years and years - I took them to my kids' various classes when they were younger, and I brought them to their sports teams as a treat etc.  Those "kids" are adults now and still ask for these cupcakes - they are THAT good.  I have no idea where the recipe originally came from - I ripped it out of a magazine some 30+ years ago!

1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup sugar
1 pkg instant pistachio pudding mix
2-1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Buttercream or cream cheese frosting (I'm using buttercream).

And for decoration you can use anything you'd like.  I'm going with green M&Ms, but you can use green sugar or sprinkles or dye the buttercream green with food coloring!

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, pudding mix, baking powder and salt.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
In another bowl, combine the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Stir into dry ingredients until combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Fill foil or paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Bake at 375 degrees F for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Frost and decorate as desired. Makes 20-24.

Buttercream Frosting
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 to 2 TBSP whipping cream or milk

In a mixer, mix together sugar and butter until light and fluffy - around 3-4 minutes.

Add vanilla and cream and continue to beat for 1 minute more, adding more cream if you want for your desired spreading consistency.


Frost and decorate the cupcakes however you desire.




Photo Credit: Cate Bogue

Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
I thought about coming up with some great cocktail to serve alongside this Irish meal, but nothing green and (sickeningly) sweet sounded like a good accompaniment.  While a white wine would go fine with it (think Sauvignon Blanc or French Sancerre or a French Pinot Gris), the true drink du jour should be a good Irish stout such as:



Sláinte!!!!!


Now for the BEST part of this meal - - - LEFTOVERS!

REUBEN SANDWICH
(Adapted from Closet Cooking)
Closet Cooking
Now for the real reason I'm preparing a St Patty's Day dinner - LEFTOVERS the next day are even better!  Nothing better than a good reuben sandwich!  The recipe is for ONE sandwich:
1 TBSP butter, room temperature
2 slices rye, lightly toasted
1/2 cup swiss, shredded or sliced,  room temperature
2 TBSP sauerkraut, squeezed and drained, coarsely chopped
1 TBSP 1000 Island Dressing (or you can use Russian dressing if you'd prefer)
2 ounces cooked corned beef, sliced or shredded, warm
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat. Butter the outside of each slice of bread, sprinkle half of the cheese on the inside of one slice of bread, top with half of the sauerkraut, half of the dressing, the corned beef, the remaining dressing, sauerkraut, cheese and finally the other slice of bread. Add the sandwich to the pan and grill until golden brown and the cheese has melted, about 2-4 minutes per side.  You can also heat the sandwiches in a panini press - much quicker and easier.

Another fabulous sounding recipe using St Pat's leftovers is the following:


REUBEN QUESADILLAS
(Adapted from Closet Cooking)
2 (8 inch) tortillas
1/2 cup swiss cheese, shredded
1/4 cup cooked corned beef, chopped or shredded and warm
1/4 cup sauerkraut, squeezed and drained
1/2 TBSP thousand island dressing

Melt a bit of butter in a pan over medium heat.
Place a tortilla into the pan, swirl it around in the butter, set it aside and repeat with the second tortilla leaving it in the pan.
Sprinkle half of the cheese on the tortilla followed by the corned beef, sauerkraut, 1000 island dressing, the remaining cheese and finally the other tortilla.
Cook until the quesadilla is golden brown on both sides and the cheese is melted, about 2-4 minutes per side.

livescience

Erin Go Braugh!
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue
Photo Credit: Cate Bogue







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