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Paddy’s Day Party!

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This year’s St.Patrick’s Day feast week ended with a casual pub-style party.  We had Guinness and Irish Mules, corned beef, potato chips, Celtic music on the ghetto blaster (how retro!), all things green and so much more!  Here’s some of the fun things I tried out this year!

For the first time I made my own corned beef.  I ended up using a sirloin tip roast (brisket is harder for me to get my hands on) and I tested out two different recipes.  One with mortons tender quick and the other with sea salt and beet juice (which was supposed to turn the meat pink…it did not!)

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Both were tasty although the general consensus was that the pinker corned beef was the favorite. (Made with the mortons salt). I found both varieties to be salty even after boiling for 3 hrs, next year I’d boil it longer!

It’s not a true party without goodie bags so I hit up the dollar store and picked up some cheap and fun items…green play-dough, Irish spring soap, green shamrock socks, green beaded necklaces, glow sticks, shamrock tattoos and button pins, some cute leprechaun hats, and I filled up some small bottles with Jameson whiskey!

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I also picked up some shamrock garland and a variety of st. Patrick’s day paper plates and napkins! Cheap and easy!

Our bar “Murphy’s” (named lovingly after Murphy’s law!) was open and stocked with Guinness, Jameson and fun Jell-O shots we made!  Our signature drink for the night was an Irish Mule: Jameson, ginger-ale, club soda, lime and mint!  Very refreshingly themed!!

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We had a buffet bar set-up for easily nibbling, sort of like a ploughmans lunch; cheeses, olives, mustards, sauerkraut, corned beef & sausage, homemade pumpernickel & crackers, green veggies & dip, potato chips and cheesy Guinness, bacon dip.  Later through the night I set out beef sliders with Jameson whiskey BBQ sauce smothered onions (and the option to add the cheesy Guinness, bacon dip to them too!)

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I know the green beer shenanigans will continue all weekend for most, and why not?!  It IS the most wonderful time of the year after all!  So until next year’s St. Patrick’s Day festivities, Slainte everyone!

May love and laughter light your days,

And warm your heart and home.

May good and faithful friends be yours,

Wherever you may roam.

May peace and plenty bless your world,

With joy that long endures.

May all life’s passing seasons,

Bring the best to you and yours.

(An Old Irish Blessing)

Cheers

Irish Coffee (heaven)…

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I was lucky enough to travel to Ireland with my husband and parents a few years back…it felt like a second home and I cannot wait to be able to go back.  Insanely it took us halfway through our trip to discover these mugs of heaven, Irish Coffee! And from that moment forward my life was forever changed!

My husband and dad had chosen to spend the day sightseeing around the town of Ennis where we were staying and my mom and I decided to shop (surprise surprise).  It was one of the few rainy days we experienced while we were there but it was cold and wet and so at the beginning of our shopping day we decided to slip into a pub and have something hot to warm up.  Can I just add that the pubs there are as amazing as you could possibly imagine. So much culture and heritage and warmth!  We both ordered an Irish coffee and it was brought to us on a plate with a package of thin ginger cookies (that were heaven-sent too I swear!). That coffee….oh that coffee!  I still dream of it.  Later on that day when we had hooked back up with the guys it turned out that they too had stopped in that pub and had Irish coffees as well…it was like the angels were sending us there separately but together so we could all experience it!

After that we continued to order Irish coffees whenever we ate out (unless we were having a Guinness day!) and at one point we finally asked how to make them knowing full well it likely would never be the same once we were home!  Here’s the recipe we were told!

~In a large clear glass mug add a hefty shot of Irish whisky (Jameson) to 2 tsp brown sugar. Stir and top with hot, strong brewed coffee.  Top with unpasteurized heavy cream, whipped to a beautiful froth. (Herein lies the problem here in Canada…unless you can hook me up with a generous dairy farmer as I don’t think I want to start milking my own cow anytime soon!  The whipping cream you buy in the store just isn’t quite like the cream in Ireland…likely due to the pasteurization so our friendly mixologist at the pub told us.) Do not stir the coffee at this point.  You want to sip the coffee through the heavy cream.

I wanted to post this amazing recipe in ample time for you all to go out and gather up the ingredients (specifically that divine Irish Whiskey) so that you too can toast to my favorite time of the year!  I plan to enjoy these hot mugs of heaven all week leading up to St. Patty’s Day! And if by chance someone from Ireland reads this post and knows what I’m talking about with those thin ginger cookies I would forever be indebted to you if you wanted to send some my way!

Slainte!! (Cheers!!)