Cultural Craving: Irish Food

March 13, 2013

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St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner, so this Cultural Craving post is dedicated to all things Irish. With mostly potato and cabbage based recipes, Irish cuisine developed over centuries of social change. The traditional dishes showcased here reflect the agricultural landscape of Ireland and have a wholesome bite that is easy to replicate right from your own home. So this St. Paddy’s Day, forget the stout or whiskey and pair these classic dishes with your favorite Missouri wines. Who knows, it might even bring some luck your way. If you’re the first one digging into the mashed potatoes on Thanksgiving, then colcannon is your St. Patrick’s Day equivalent. This traditional Irish dish has strong mythological ties (it’s said that the fairies and goblins craved it from the evergreen hills). Some households would bury trinkets deep inside the creamy dish to suggest what the receiver has in store for the next year. This could be a ring to signify marriage or money to suggest possible wealth. This recipe is very easy to follow and has the colcannon essentials: cabbage, potatoes and butter. It’s creamy and delicious. But be careful, you might have some fairies or goblins knocking on your door for seconds. Pair it with: Chardonel

Irish Soda Bread

Ireland was much poorer than their European counterparts in the early 1800s. One item many couldn’t afford was yeast, so the Irish made do with baking soda to leaven bread. They combined it with buttermilk, salt, and flour to make soda bread, which was baked in a cast-iron pot. Today, there are many versions of Irish Soda Bread (bakers over the centuries have added butter, dried cranberries, seeds or sugar). This recipe has a sweet bite thanks to raisins (currants can be substituted). Pair it with: Catawba

Dulse and Yellowman

Summertime in Northern Ireland brings the Lammas Fair. At this festivity, the food is the leading star and traditional treats like dulse and yellowman are anticipated. Dulse is a red seaweed chip that has a sugary bite thanks to sweet toffee. This recipe doesn’t use actual seaweed (obvious this can be a little hard ot come by in Missouri). Instead, it uses granola and pairs it with kale chips for a crunchy bite. Pair it with: Vignoles