I went with traditional items for this week’s St. Patrick’s Day recipes…now that I think about it, I feel bad that I didn’t include any fun, bright rainbow or gold recipes. But a quick Google search will provide you with more options than I could ever choose from! On her Clean &  Scentsible blog (https://www.cleanandscentsible.com/st-patricks-day-rainbow-ideas/) Jenn has compiled some really fun ideas!

I remember growing up, my mother would somehow find green bagels for my breakfast on St. Patrick’s Day. Honestly, that’s nearly the only thing I can recall from my childhood of the little-celebrated holiday, other than Shamrock shakes at McDonald’s, which I really disliked. Still, do, in fact. Oh, and little shamrock or money plants (Chinese Money plants). Did you ever get one of those for St. Patrick’s Day?

I’ve got a lovely three-course meal below, plus a beverage recipe that I hope you will enjoy that reflects the Irish traditions of St. Patrick’s Day. Except the cake: that’s just delicious!

Recipes wanted! Submitted recipes will be accepted at [email protected], or you can stop by the Albion office and drop a copy off up front. If you don’t have a recipe to submit right now, but there is a recipe you’re desperately seeking, feel free to email or drop off a note for a “Recipe Request.” I’m still requesting recipes that highlight local agriculture as well as your favorite apple pie recipes!


Smoky Cheese and Potato Soup


6-oz. smoked cheese (cheddar, mozzarella, or gouda), shredded

1 TBSP flour

4-oz. ham, finely chopped

1 medium carrot, finely chopped

1/2 tsp curry powder

1/2 tsp paprika

3C whole milk

1/2 of 24-oz. package refrigerated garlic mashed potatoes

Canned shoestring potatoes

fresh snipped parsley, and/or paprika (optional)


In a bowl combine cheese and flour; set aside.

In a Dutch oven combine the ham, carrot, curry powder, and paprika. Cook and stir over medium heat for 2 minutes. Stir in milk. Cook, uncovered, for 4-5 minutes, just until milk is hot but not boiling, stirring occasionally. Gradually whisk in mashed potatoes. Cook, stirring frequently, until hot and bubbly. Stir in the cheese and flour. Cook and stir for 2 minutes, just until cheese is melted.

Ladle soup into bowls. Top with shoestring potatoes, parsley, and/or paprika.

Note from Auntie: Cut four bread slices into shamrock shapes. Mix 1/4C butter, 1/4C fresh chopped parsley, 1/8 tsp salt, 1/8 tsp pepper and 1/8 tsp paprika; mix well. and Generously butter the bread with the mixture. Place soup in oven-safe bowls on a baking tray. Put one shamrock bread on top. Sprinkle more shredded smoked cheese on top of bread. Broil on high for 3 minutes, or until golden or browned. Remove carefully, sprinkle more fresh parsley on top and serve.

***Recipe courtesy of Midwest Living.***


Homemade Corned Beef and Cabbage


Corned Beef:

Pickling Spice:

5 dried chiles (de orbol)

1 1-in. piece fresh ginger, peeled, coarsely chopped

1 3-in. cinnamon stick

10 cardamom pods

8 dried bay leaves

3 TBSP whole peppercorns

2 TBSP coriander seeds

2 TBSP mustard seeds

1 TBSP allspice berries

1 TBSP juniper berries

1 tsp whole cloves

Brine and Brisket:

1, 14.9-ounce can Guinness draught

1/2C (packed) light brown sugar

5 tsp (pink) curing salt

2-1/2C kosher salt, plus more

1 5–6 pound untrimmed, flat-cut beef brisket


2-3 medium carrots, cut into 2-3-in. pieces

1 medium onion, cut into 2-3-in. pieces

6-8 medium potatoes, quartered (red preferred)

1 head cabbage, quartered



Toast chiles, ginger, cinnamon stick, cardamom, bay leaves, peppercorns, coriander seeds, mustard seeds, allspice berries, juniper berries and cloves in a large dry skillet over medium heat, shaking pan occasionally, until spices start to jump in pan and are fragrant, 3-5 minutes (don’t let them burn). Transfer to a mortar and pestle and coarsely crush about 1 minute (or crush with a knife).

Whisk Guinness, brown sugar, curing salt, 2-1/2C kosher salt, and 1 gallon water in a large pot or container (at least 8 quarts) until sugar and salts are dissolved. Scoop out 1/2C pickling spice and set aside in a small bowl or jar (you won’t need it again until it’s time to cook the corned beef). Add remaining spice mixture and brisket to brine and weigh down with a plate to keep it submerged (it’s okay if brisket needs to be crammed into the container, just don’t fold it; you can also cut it in half if you can’t find a large enough container). Cover with plastic wrap or a lid and chill, flipping meat once a day, 5-6 days.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a simmer. Remove brisket from brine and rinse thoroughly under cold water; discard brine. Add brisket to simmering water along with reserved 1/2C spice mixture and cook, covered, until corned beef is fork-tender and easily shreds with the grain, 4 to 4-1/2 hours.

Add carrot and potatoes approximately 25 minutes before corned beef is finished. About 15 minutes before finish, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add quartered cabbage, cover. After 10 minutes, take corned beef off heat, allow to rest. Cook cabbage until fork-tender, approximately 15 minutes more.

Slice corned beef against the grain and serve with cabbage, potatoes, onions and carrots.

***Recipe courtesy of Bon Appetit.***


Amazingly Easy Irish Soda Bread


4C all-purpose flour

4 TBSP sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1 TBSP baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/2C margarine, softened

1C buttermilk

1 egg

1/4C butter, melted


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease a large baking sheet.

In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and margarine. Stir in 1C of buttermilk and egg. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly. Form dough into a round and place on prepared baking sheet. In a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4C buttermilk; brush loaf with this mixture. Use a sharp knife to cut an 'X' into the top of the loaf.

Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean, 45-50 minutes. Check for doneness after 30 minutes. You may continue to brush the loaf with the butter mixture while it bakes. Serve with real butter, honey butter or jam.

***Recipe courtesy of MP Welty via allrecipes.com.***


Green Velvet Layer Cake



2-1/2C flour

2 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp fine salt

1-1/4C buttermilk, well shaken

1 TBSP green liquid food coloring

2 tsp pure vanilla extract

2C sugar

1C unsalted butter, room temperature

3 large eggs, lightly beaten


1/2C flour

1-1/2C milk

1-1/2C unsalted butter, room temperature

1-1/2C sugar

4 tsp pure vanilla extract

Pinch fine salt

Green liquid or gel food coloring, optional

Green candies and sanding sugar for decorating, optional


For the cake: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Butter three 8-in. round cake pans, line with parchment and butter the parchment; set aside. Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl; set aside. Whisk the buttermilk, food coloring and vanilla in a spouted measuring cup; set aside.

Beat the granulated sugar and butter in a stand mixer (or a large bowl if using a hand mixer) on medium speed until very light in color and fluffy, about 5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. With the mixer still running, slowly add the eggs and beat until fully incorporated. Reduce the mixer speed to the lowest speed; with it running, add 1/3 of the flour mixture, then 1/2 of the buttermilk mixture, then 1/2 of the remaining flour mixture, then the remaining buttermilk mixture, then the remaining flour mixture. Scrape down the sides and beat until well mixed. Divide the batter evenly among the three prepared pans. Bake until slightly puffed and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the center, 20-25 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes in the pan, then turn out to cool completely.

For the frosting: Put the flour in a small saucepan. Vigorously whisk in about 1/2C of the milk, making sure to get the whisk into the edges of the pan, until you have a smooth, thick paste. (This step keeps the flour from clumping.) Slowly whisk in the remaining milk until fully incorporated and the mixture is smooth. Cook over medium heat, whisking continuously, until the mixture is very thick, about 5 minutes (towards the end of the process, the mixture will become a thick paste; it may seem to be forming lumps, but whisk vigorously and the lumps will disappear). Scrape the frosting into a bowl, press plastic wrap onto the surface and refrigerate until cool, about 45 minutes.

Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or a hand mixer), beat the butter and granulated sugar on medium speed until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the cooled flour mixture a tablespoon at a time and beat until smooth. Switch to the whisk attachment (or continue with the hand mixer), add the vanilla, salt and 3-5 drops food coloring, if using, and whip until very light and fluffy, like thick whipped cream, up to 10 minutes with a stand mixer or 12 minutes with a hand mixer.

To assemble: Place one layer on a cake plate, spread frosting on top and repeat with the 2 remaining layers. Frost the sides and decorate with candies and sanding sugar if using.

Note 1: this recipe can instead be baked in two 9-in. layers or as 24 cupcakes.

Note 2: sticking to the St. Patrick’s Day theme, you could decorate with rainbow frosting or rainbow sanding sugar and decorate with (plastic) gold coins! Or go all out and double the recipe, divide the batter into six equal portions and use red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple food coloring to make rainbow batter and continue following the recipe.

***Recipe courtesy of the Food Network Kitchen.***


Non-Alcoholic Irish Coffee


2/3C strong black coffee

2 tsp light brown sugar

1/4 tsp rum extract

1/2C heavy whipping cream

2 teaspoons cocoa powder, for garnish, optional


Fill a glass mug with 2/3C of hot coffee. Add the sugar and rum extract and stir until dissolved. Let the cups stand still until the coffee has completely stopped swirling.

Meanwhile, beat the cream in a medium bowl until it’s thick and airy, but still pourable. Transfer the cream to a jug with a spout.

Pour the cream over the back of a spoon right in the center of each mug. There should be a sharp line between the coffee and floating cream.

If desired, dust the cream with cocoa powder using a shamrock stencil, and serve immediately.

Note: if you want yours alcoholic, omit the rum extract and replace with approximately 1-oz. Irish whiskey; or omit extract and brown sugar and add approximately 1-oz. Bailey’s Irish Cream liqueur.

***Recipe courtesy of Brook and Emma, of “Savor the Flavour” blog.***