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DINNER OF THE MONTH 2010
DESSERT OF THE MONTH 2010
SUPERBOWL XLIII
DESSERT OF THE MONTH 2006
DESSERT OF THE MONTH 2007
DESSERT OF THE MONTH 2008
DESSERT OF THE MONTH 2009
DINNER OF THE MONTH 2007
DINNEROF THE MONTH 2008
DINNER OF THE MONTH 2009
SUPERBOWL PARTY 2007
TAILGATING 2008
VISITOR'S COMMENTS
BASEMENT BUDDY RECIPES
BAKING TECHNIQUES
COOKING TIPS
SUBSTITUTIONS
APPETIZERS
BREADS
CAKES
CANDY
CASSEROLES
COOKIES
CORNED BEEF
DESSERTS
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MISCELLANEOUS
PIES
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SPRING RECIPES
SUMMER RECIPES
AUTUMN RECIPES
WINTER COOKING
NEW YEAR'S EVE CASUAL GET TOGETHER
STAR SPARKLING FAMILY NEW YEARS EVE CELEBRATION
SUPER BOWL PARTY
VALENTINE DAY FOR 2
ST PATRICKS DAY
EASTER RECIPES
HALLOWEEN RECIPES
THE PERFECT THANKSGIVING
THE ULTIMATE CHRISTMAS DINNER
CHRISTMAS GOODIES
GINGERBREAD HOUSE PARTY
HOST A COOKIE EXCHANGE
CHRISTMAS CENTERPIECES
HOLIDAY GIFTS FROM YOUR KITCHEN
LETTER FROM SANTA

Why Saint Patrick's Day?
Saint Patrick's Day has come to be associated with everything Irish: anything green and gold, shamrocks and luck. Most importantly, to those who celebrate its intended meaning, St. Patrick's Day is a traditional day for spiritual renewal and offering prayers for missionaries worldwide.

So, why is it celebrated on March 17th? One theory is that that is the day that St. Patrick died. Since the holiday began in Ireland, it is believed that as the Irish spread out around the world, they took with them their history and celebrations. The biggest observance of all is, of course, in Ireland. With the exception of restaurants and pubs, almost all businesses close on March 17th. Being a religious holiday as well, many Irish attend mass, where March 17th is the traditional day for offering prayers for missionaries worldwide before the serious celebrating begins.

In American cities with a large Irish population, St. Patrick's Day is a very big deal. Big cities and small towns alike celebrate with parades, "wearing of the green," music and songs, Irish food and drink, and activities for kids such as crafts, coloring and games. Some communities even go so far as to dye rivers or streams green!

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RECIPES

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Irish Soda Bread

Whether or not you're Irish, this classic quick bread recipe brings great taste into your kitchen.

3 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened

2 1/2 cups Gold Medal® all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup raisins, if desired

3/4 cup buttermilk

1. Heat oven to 375ºF. Grease cookie sheet.

2. Cut butter into flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt in large bowl, using pastry blender or crisscrossing 2 knives, until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Stir in raisins and just enough buttermilk so dough leaves side of bowl.

3. Turn dough onto lightly floured surface. Knead 1 to 2 minutes or until smooth. Shape into round loaf, about 6 1/2 inches in diameter. Place on cookie sheet. Cut an X shape about 1/2 inch deep through loaf with floured knife.

4. Bake 35 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Brush with butter or margarine, softened, if desired.

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Irish Cream Pie

A chocolate pat-in-the-pan pie crust makes easy work of this special edition chocolate-plus pie!

Chocolate Pat-in-Pan Pie Crust (See Below)

1/2 cup milk

32 large jet-puffed marshmallows

1/3 cup Irish cream liqueur

1 1/2 cups whipping (heavy) cream

Grated semisweet baking chocolate, if desired

1. Make Chocolate Pat-in-Pan Pie Crust.

2. Heat milk and marshmallows in 3-quart saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly, just until marshmallows are melted. Refrigerate about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until mixture mounds slightly when dropped from a spoon. (If mixture becomes too thick, place saucepan in bowl of warm water; stir mixture until proper consistency.) Gradually stir in liqueur.

3. Beat whipping cream in chilled medium bowl with electric mixer on high speed until stiff. Fold marshmallow mixture into whipped cream. Spread in pie crust. Sprinkle with chocolate. Cover and refrigerate until set, at least 4 hours but no longer than 48 hours. Store covered in refrigerator.

Chocolate Pat-in-Pan Pie Crust

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened

1/4 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup finely chopped pecans or walnuts

2 tablespoons baking cocoa

Heat oven to 400ºF. Mix all ingredients until soft dough forms. Press firmly and evenly against bottom and side of ungreased pie plate, 9x1 1/4 inches. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until light brown. Cool completely on wire rack, about 30 minutes.

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Irish Cream Bars

Need a little dessert to complete a fine dinner? Try a sophisticated bar that will pair nicely with coffee.

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened

1/4 cup powdered sugar

2 tablespoons unsweetened baking cocoa

3/4 cup sour cream

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup Irish cream liqueur

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 egg

1/2 cup whipping (heavy) cream

Chocolate sprinkles, if desired

1. Heat oven to 350ºF. In medium bowl, mix 3/4 cup flour, the butter, powdered sugar and cocoa with spoon until soft dough forms. Press in ungreased square pan, 8x8x2 or 9x9x2 inches. Bake 10 minutes.

2. In medium bowl, beat remaining ingredients except whipping cream and chocolate sprinkles with wire whisk until blended. Pour over baked layer. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until filling is set. Cool slightly; refrigerate at least 2 hours before cutting. For bars, cut into 6 rows by 4 rows.

3. In chilled small bowl, beat whipping cream with electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form. Spoon whipped cream into pastry bag fitted with medium writing or star tip. Pipe dollop of cream onto each bar. Top with chocolate sprinkles. Store covered in refrigerator up to 48 hours.

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Grilled Ground Lamb on Skewers (Seekh Kabobs)

Street food of India becomes a tantalizing food adventure in your home!

1 pound ground lamb, turkey, chicken or beef

1/2 cup ground blanched almonds

1/2 cup finely chopped red onion

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cardamom

1 teaspoon ground cumin

3/4 teaspoon black peppercorns, ground

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

5 medium garlic cloves, finely chopped

Mint-Cilantro Chutney (Pudhina Thuviyal) (See Below)

1. Heat coals or gas grill for direct heat. Mix all ingredients except chutney in large bowl.

2. Divide lamb mixture into 12 equal parts. Shape each part around each of twelve 6- to 8-inch bamboo or metal skewers, pressing the mixture with your hands to cover half the length of the skewer.

3. Cover and grill kabobs 4 to 5 inches from medium heat 13 to 15 minutes, turning skewers occasionally to ensure even browning, until lamb is no longer pink in center.4. Serve kabobs as is or with chutney.

Broiling Directions:

Set oven control to broil. Place kabobs on rack in broiler pan. Broil with tops 2 to 3 inches from heat 13 to 15 minutes, turning skewers occasionally to ensure even browning, until lamb is no longer pink in center.

Mint-Cilantro Chutney (Pudhina Thuviyal)

1 cup chopped fresh cilantro1medium tomato, chopped (3/4 cup)

3/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves1medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup lime juice, (2 medium limes)

1 teaspoon salt2medium garlic cloves

1 to 2 fresh Thai, serrano or cayenne chilies

1. Place all ingredients in blender. Cover and blend on medium speed until smooth.

2. Tightly cover and store in refrigerator up to 10 days.

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Slow Cooker Old-World Corned Beef and Vegetables

It’s that meat-and-potatoes meal everyone dreams of coming home to. And now you can!

2 1/2 pounds medium new potatoes, (about 8), cut in half

2 cups baby-cut carrots

1 cup frozen small whole onions, thawed

1 corned beef brisket (3 to 3 1/2 pounds)

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup water

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon cornstarch

2 tablespoons cold water

1. Mix potatoes, carrots and onions in 4- to 6-quart slow cooker.

2. Thoroughly rinse corned beef; discard seasoning packet. Place beef on vegetables; sprinkle with pepper. Mix 1/2 cup water and the Worcestershire sauce; pour over beef.

3. Cover and cook on low heat setting 8 to 9 hours or until beef and vegetables are tender.

4. Remove beef and vegetables from slow cooker; cover to keep warm. Pour juices from slow cooker into 1-quart saucepan; heat to boiling. Mix cornstarch and cold water until smooth; stir into juices. Cook, stirring constantly, until sauce has thickened. Serve sauce with beef and vegetables. Note: This recipe was tested in slow cookers with heating elements in the side and bottom of the cooker, not in cookers that stand only on a heated base. For slow cookers with just a heated base, follow the manufacturer’s directions for layering ingredients and choosing a temperature.

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Lamb Patties with Minted Kiwifruit Sauce

Broil ground lamb with a flavorful blend of spices, and top it off with a cool mint sauce for a fast, elegant meal.

2 pounds lean ground lamb

1 1/3 cups soft bread crumbs

2/3 cup dry red wine or vegetable broth

3/4 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves, crumbled

4 small garlic cloves, finely chopped

Minted Kiwifruit Sauce (See Below)

1. Set oven control to broil. Spray broiler pan rack with cooking spray.

2. Mix all ingredients except Minted Kiwifruit Sauce. Shape mixture into 8 patties, each about 1 inch thick. Place patties on rack in broiler pan.

3. Broil with tops about 3 inches from heat 10 to 14 minutes for medium doneness, turning once. Serve with sauce.

Minted Kiwifruit Sauce

2 medium kiwifruit, peeled and mashed (1/2 cup)

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves

or

1 teaspoon dried mint leaves, crumbled

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon lime juice

Mix all ingredients.

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Peanutty Good Luck Snack

It’s your lucky day! You can make this charming snack in 10 minutes--no cooking or baking required!

4 cups Lucky Charms® cereal

1 cup candy-coated peanut butter pieces

1 cup yogurt-covered raisins

1 cup peanuts

1. Place all ingredients in resealable plastic food-storage bag; seal. Shake until mixed.

2. Store at room temperature up to 3 days.

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Mint Chocolate Chip Ice-Cream Pie

Cookies and ice cream come together in this dreamy frozen dessert.

2 pints mint chocolate chip ice cream, slightly softened

1 package (6 ounces) ready-to-use chocolate-flavored pie crust

1 1/4 cups crushed chocolate-covered mint cookies

1 cup chocolate fudge topping

1. Spread 1 pint of the ice cream in pie crust. Sprinkle 1 cup of the crushed cookies over ice cream. Cover and freeze 1 hour.

2. Spread remaining pint of ice cream over cookies. Cover and freeze about 3 hours or until firm.

3. Let stand at room temperature about 10 minutes before cutting. Serve with fudge topping; sprinkle with remaining cookies. Cover and freeze any remaining pie.

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Mint-Chocolate Brownies

Get a double dose of mint! Cool mint chips flavor these brownies, and a mint-chocolate glaze generously highlights the top.

1 package Betty Crocker® Original Supreme brownie mix (with chocolate syrup pouch)

1/3 cup water

1/3 cup vegetable oil

2 eggs

1 cup chopped pecans

1 package (10 ounces) mint-chocolate chips (1 1/2 cups)

Mint Frosting (See Below)

Shiny Chocolate Glaze (See Below)

1. Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease bottom only of rectangular pan, 13x9x2 inches.

2. Stir brownie mix, chocolate syrup, water, oil and eggs in medium bowl, using spoon, about 50 strokes or until well blended

.3. Stir in pecans and 1 cup of the mint-chocolate chips (set aside remaining mint-chocolate chips for Shiny Chocolate Glaze). Spread in pan.

4. Bake 28 to 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted 2 inches from side of pan comes out clean or almost clean; cool completely.

5. Spread Mint Frosting over brownies. Drizzle Shiny Chocolate Glaze over frosted brownies.

6. Refrigerate about 30 minutes or until glaze is firm. For 48 brownies, cut into 8 rows by 6 rows.

Mint Frosting

3 cups powdered sugar

1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened

2 tablespoons milk

1/2 teaspoon mint extract

2 drops green food color, if desired

Beat powdered sugar and butter in small bowl on low speed of electric mixer until smooth. Beat in milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until spreadable. Beat in extract and food color.

Shiny Chocolate Glaze

Remaining mint-chocolate chips

2 tablespoons butter or margarine

2 tablespoons corn syrup

1 to 3 teaspoons hot water

Heat mint-chocolate chips, butter and corn syrup over low heat, stirring occasionally, until melted. Stir in hot water, a few drops at a time, until mixture is thin enough to drizzle.


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Lamburgers with Rosemary-Mint Sauce

Savory ground lamb cooks in minutes and gets a cooling, creamy topping full of Indian flavors.

Rosemary-Mint Sauce (See Below)

1 1/2 pounds lean ground lamb

1 small onion, finely chopped (1/4 cup)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

2garlic cloves, finely chopped

1. Make Rosemary-Mint Sauce.

2. Mix remaining ingredients. Shape mixture into 6 patties.

3. Spray 12-inch skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium heat. Cook patties in skillet 5 minutes; turn. Cook 3 to 5 minutes longer or until no longer pink in center. Serve with sauce.

Rosemary-Mint Sauce

1 cup plain fat-free yogurt

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar or cider vinegar

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves

or

1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves, crumbled

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

Mix all ingredients.

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Chocolate Mint Swirl Cake

This rich, decadent bundt cake combines two favorite flavors. The minty glaze is-you guessed it-icing on the cake!

1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 eggs, separated

1/8 teaspoon peppermint extract

3 drops green food color

1 package Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® devil's food cake mix

1 1/3 cups water

1/3 cup vegetable oil

2 eggs

1 1/2 tablespoons semisweet chocolate chips

1 teaspoon shortening

1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

3 drops green food color

1 tablespoon corn syrup

2 teaspoons water

1. Heat oven to 350ºF. Generously grease and flour 12- cup bundt cake pan.

2. Beat cream cheese in small bowl with electric mixer on high speed until smooth and fluffy. Beat in granulated sugar, 2 egg yolks, 1/8 teaspoon peppermint extract and 3 drops food color until smooth; set aside.

3. Beat cake mix, 1 1/3 cups water, the oil, 2 whole eggs and 2 egg whites in large bowl on low speed 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed 2 minutes.

4. Pour half of the batter (about 2 1/2 cups) into pan. Spoon cream cheese mixture into ring, about 1 inch wide, onto center of batter in pan. Spoon remaining batter over cream cheese mixture.

5. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in cake comes out clean. Cool in pan 20 minutes. Turn upside down onto wire rack; remove pan. Cool completely, about 35 minutes.

6. Heat chocolate chips and shortening until melted; set aside. Mix powdered sugar, 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract, 3 drops food color, the corn syrup and enough of the 2 to 2 1/2 teaspoons water to make a thick glaze that can be easily drizzled. Drizzle powdered sugar glaze over cake. Immediately spoon melted chocolate over glaze in 1/2-inch-wide ring. Working quickly, pull toothpick through chocolate to make swirls. Refrigerate until serving. Store covered in refrigerator.

High Altitude (3500-6500 ft) Heat oven to 375ºF. Beat cheese mixture on medium-high 1 1/2 min. Stir 1/4 cup all-purpose flour into cake mix. Use 1 Tbsp oil. Pour all of batter into pan; spoon cheese mixture on batter. Swirl through batter and cheese mixture with a knife.

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Rabbit Stewed in Stout

This richly flavored stewed rabbit has a special ingredient to make it tender and flavorful: Irish stout!

4 slices bacon

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon paprika

1 rabbit, cut up (3 to 3 1/2 pounds)

8 ounces mushrooms, cut in half

1 jar (15 ounces) whole onion

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves

or

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

1 dried bay leaf

1 bottle (12 ounces) Irish stout

1 tablespoon cornstarch

2 tablespoons cold water

Chopped fresh parsley, if desired

1. Cook bacon in 4-quart Dutch oven over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp. Remove bacon with slotted spoon, reserving fat in Dutch oven, and drain on paper towels.

2. Mix flour, salt, pepper and paprika. Coat rabbit pieces with flour mixture. Heat bacon fat over medium heat. Cook rabbit in bacon fat about 15 minutes or until brown on all sides.

3. Stir in mushrooms, onions, thyme and bay leaf. Pour stout over rabbit and vegetables. Crumble reserved bacon over mixture. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer about 1 hour or until thickest pieces of rabbit are tender.

4. Remove rabbit and vegetables to warm platter; keep warm. Remove bay leaf. Heat stout mixture to boiling. Mix cornstarch and water; stir into stout mixture. Boil and stir 1 minute. Pour sauce over rabbit and vegetables. Sprinkle with parsley.

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Celebration Brownie Mix

An impressive layered brownie mix makes the perfect gift from your kitchen to someone you love!

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup baking cocoa

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup white baking chips

3/4 cup chopped pecans

1 bottle (50 ml) coffee-flavored, raspberry-flavored

or

Irish cream-flavored liqueur

1. Layer all ingredients except liqueur in order listed in 1-quart jar with screw-on lid. Attach liqueur bottle to jar with ribbon.

2. Include directions below.

Directions for Celebration Brownie Mix

Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease bottom only of square pan, 8x8x2 or 9x9x2 inches, with shortening. Melt 1/2 cup butter or margarine. Beat melted butter, 2 eggs and the liqueur in medium bowl with spoon until blended. Stir in Celebration Brownie Mix. Spread batter in pan. Bake 8-inch pan 30 to 35 minutes, 9-inch pan 25 to 30 minutes, or until dry around edges and toothpick inserted in center comes out almost clean. Cool completely, about 1 hour. For brownies, cut into 4 rows by 4 rows. Makes 16 brownies.

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Lamb and Potato Skillet

Feeling like a quick Irish adventure? You’ll have one with this simple supper dish that combines ground lamb, leek, dill and potatoes.

1 pound ground lamb

1 medium leek, chopped

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1/2 cup beef broth

1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill weed

or

1 teaspoon dried dill weed

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

3 medium potatoes, cut into 1/4-inch pieces (3 cups)

1 dried bay leaf

2 small tomatoes, coarsely chopped (1 cup)

1. Cook lamb, leek and garlic in 10-inch skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until lamb is brown; drain.

2. Stir remaining ingredients except tomatoes into lamb mixture. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer about 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender. Remove bay leaf. Stir in tomatoes; heat through.

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Spicy Lamb Couscous

North African flavors marinate tender lamb that you grill and serve with hot cooked couscous, the wheat-grain semolina served as a grain side dish in this part of the world.

1 1/2 pounds lamb leg1medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons honey

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

3 cups hot cooked couscous

Red pepper sauce, if desired

1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves

1. Remove fat from lamb. Cut lamb into 1 1/2-inch cubes. Mix remaining ingredients except couscous, mint and pepper sauce in glass or plastic bowl. Add lamb; stir to coat with marinade. Cover and refrigerate 4 hours.

2. Set oven control to broil. Spray broiler pan rack with cooking spray. Remove lamb from marinade. Place lamb on rack in broiler pan. Broil with tops 5 inches from heat 6 minutes; turn. Spoon pan drippings over lamb. Broil about 7 minutes longer or until no longer pink in center.

3. Mix couscous and mint. Serve lamb over couscous. Serve with pepper sauce.

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