My new shamrock-festooned decoration for St. Patrick’s Day! :o)
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Do you decorate your front door with the change of seasons and holidays? I “get a kick” out of hanging a season-appropriate decoration near my own front door. Unfortunately, after last St. Patrick’s Day, it became apparent that my years-old, glittering, pressed-board shamrock, had lost its luster, and shape (becoming swollen from years of being exposed to the elements). Let me introduce you to its replacement; this cheerful shamrock-festooned, “Welcome” sign! (seen above) :o) You can find it, here.
What are the things that you enjoy about St. Patrick’s Day?
Hereare a fewthings onmyown St.Patrick’sDay happylist…
Shamrock shapes everywhere
Watching wonderful Irish movies and TV shows, such as The Quiet Man. (The Quiet Man is currently showing on Amazon Prime and will air on Turner Classic Movies on March 17 at 8 pm EST.) Find more St. Patrick’s Day movie/tv suggestions,here.
Tasty St. Patrick’s Day dishes, such as Irish Stew, Shepherd’s Pie, Chocolate Mint Dessert, and others, along with other St.Patrick’s Daysnacks.
Please, continue reading to find Irish recipes and treats, below, plus more. :o)
A commemorative print from the beautifully scenic Quiet Man tour, that I enjoyed in Ireland, in September 2013.
Read about that tour hereandhere, plus more can be found below in the Take a Look At The Ireland and St. Patrick’s Day-Related Blog Posts section, toward the bottom of this post.
Shepherd’s Pie has always been a favorite with my family. In fact, it was my daughter’s favorite when she was growing up. Even before that, my mom served up this recipe at the dinner table of my youth. This dish falls into my “comfort food” category. These days, I often change out the ground beef with ground chicken, and add a little (2%-lower fat) cheese on top for a bit of added flavor. Also, I normally use prepared mashed potatoes, taking less time and making less mess, without much sacrifice in flavor. If you are looking for a tummy-hugging mix of flavors for this March 17, I suggest that you give this recipe a try!
My version of Shepherd’s Pie, after my photo malfunction. (See below for explanation)
A Shepherd’s Pie Photo Malfunction!
I’ll bet you didn’t know that blogging can pose some unexpected perils! For instance, while preparing Shepherd’s Pie for this blog post photo, there was a Shepherd’s Pie photo malfunction! My plan was to slightly tilt the perfectly browned dish, fresh from the oven, toward the camera for a taste-tantalizing picture, but, instead, I accidentally over-tipped the casserole, sending the potatoes careening from the hot Corning Ware! You can see that occurring, along with the surprised look on my face, from the photo below! Fortunately, I spotted the potential fiasco just in the nick of time, halting the contents from pouring out. The Shepherd’s Pie was saved, although it was no longer as pretty, as it had been. :o)
A Shepherd’s Pie malfunction!
Making Shepherd’s Pie
Ingredients neededforShepherd’s Pie
1 lb. ground beef, or ground chicken
Onion-optional (I often leave this out.)
2 ½ cups, or ½ lb. cooked green beans
2 cans (10 ½ oz.) cream of mushroom soup
1-32 ounce, or more, container pre-made mashed potatoes (like Bob Evans) (I usually use the pre-made mashed potatoes in this recipe.) or 5 medium potatoes peeled and cooked with salt ½ cup warm milk 2 Tbsp.- ¼ cup butter
Cheddar cheese, shredded-optional (I usually use this, using 2% low-fat cheese)
salt, pepper, paprika
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cook meat (with onion, if desired) until done.Season with salt and pepper.
Add the cans of soup to the cooked and drained green beans. Add salt and pepper. Pour into greased 2 qt. casserole.
Spoon potatoes over the meat mixture, giving the mashed potatoes peaks, using photo, above, as a guide. (If making from scratch, mash the potatoes.Add milk and butter, salt, pepper to taste.)
Evenly sprinkle some shredded cheddar cheese over the top.
Sprinkle top lightly with Paprika.
Bake for 20-30 minutes until warm, and potato peaks are browned.
Annette’s notes-I have also added cooked corn, and/or cooked mixed vegetables, at times.
Chocolate Mint Dessert
Chocolate Mint Dessert, with its creamy green center, is a natural choice for St. Patrick’s Day.
Chocolate Mint Dessert, with its creamy green center, is a natural choice for St. Patrick’s Day, or for Christmas. This once traditional Christmas dessert at my house, was another favorite of my daughter’s. A suggestion, I recommend NOT using a glass pan for this one. One year, this beautiful dessert fell out of my refrigerator and broke onto the floor, with all of our chocolatey dessert with it. :o(
Making Chocolate Mint Dessert
Gather the ingredients for Chocolate MintDessert.
The smooth chocolate topping makes for a pretty presentation.
Chocolate Mint Dessert
1 cup flour
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1+1/2 cups/16 oz. Hershey Syrup
½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
2 Tbsp. green crème de menthe (or 1 Tbsp. water, ½-3/4 tea. mint extract, 3 drops green food coloring)
2 cups powdered sugar
6 Tbsp. butter
1 cup chocolate chips (I use the 60% Ghirardelli)
Andes Mints, or Dove Chocolate & Mint Swirl candies-optional (Garnish may be applied to individual pieces, or to brownie before cutting.)
Preheat oven at 350 degrees.
Grease 13x9x2-inch baking pan.
Combine flour, granulated sugar, eggs, and syrup in large mixing bowl. Beat till smooth.Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until top springs back when lightly touched in the center. Cool completely.
Spread on mint cream (recipe below). Cover and refrigerate.
Pour chocolate glaze (recipe below) over chilled dessert. Cover, and refrigerate at least 1 hour prior to serving.
Garnish with Andes mints, or Dove chocolates, if desired.
Cover and refrigerate left over dessert. This also freezes well.
Combine ½ cup butter, and cream de menthe in medium mixing bowl.Gradually add powdered sugar. Beat until smooth.
Melt 6 Tbsp. butter and 1 cup chocolate chips on low heat.Remove from heat, stir until smooth. Cool slightly.
Annette’s notes-This freezes well.
Cooking with Gammy
St. Patrick’s Day (It is “Luck of the Gammy” to have wonderful grandchildren!)
It is ALWAYS a lucky day for Gammy when the grands (grandchildren) come for a visit! :o)
Our leprechaun craft was a hit!
Find the recipe for these tasty peanut butterand butterscotch morsels,here.
These Leprechaun Hats can be made a couple of different ways.(See below) In the past, we have also made them when “studying” Abraham Lincoln (minus the green m&m’s), then referring to them, as Lincoln Stovepipe Hats, rather than Leprechaun Hats. :o)
KeeblerFudgeStripesCookies (see photo below)
Large marshmallows, or HostessHo Ho’s cut in two (If you use Ho Ho’s, these do not need to be coated in chocolate.)
Chocolatechips (I use Ghirardelli, 60%.)
Green m & m’s
Carefully melt chocolate in microwave, in 30 second intervals. Dip cookie into the melted chocolate. Use a fork, or spoon, to coat cookie completely. Place the cookie on wax paper.
Using a shish kabob skewer inserted into marshmallow, dip into chocolate, coating it completely. Allow excess chocolate to drip off, and then place coated marshmallow over the center of the cookie. (If using Ho Ho’s, just adhere cut side onto cookie with melted chocolate.)
Decorate with green m&m’s.
Place in refrigerator until set.
The Leprechaun Hats use Keebler Fudge Stripes Cookies as their base. For a different kind of Leprechaun hat snack, go here.
“The house fell on the Wicked Witch of the East” craft.
Using Keebler’s Fudge Stripe Cookies, a little frosting (in the tube) for “glue”, and a candy kiss, an edible Wicked Witch of the West’s hat was created.
These yummy witch’s brooms take just a small Reece’s Peanut Butter Cup and a pretzel stick.
Our MunchkinMix consisted of Mother’s Animal Crackers, Teddy Grahams, Fruit Snacks, m&m’s, small marshmallows, and pretzels.
Sock Monkey Crescents
Our Sock Monkey Crescents used Pillsbury Crescent Rolls, filled with a little sugar and sprinkle of cinnamon, a little bit of butter on top, and either a few raisins, or chocolate chips, and then baked per package directions.
Frozen Bananas weremade by using a shish kabob skewer to dip half bananas into melted chocolate chips, and then sprinkled with crushed Oreos. Placed on wax paper, they were frozen until hardened.
MadeMe Smile:o) Sharing things that put a smile on my face, recently.
Chalk on the Driveway
Warmer spring-like weather in March means breaking out the sidewalk chalk for my grandchildren to enjoy. Below are three portraits that my grandchildren did of me! :o) I am honored!
(While writing the heading above, “Chalk on the Driveway”, it reminds me of Annette Funicello’s 1959 rock and rollhit, “Tall Paul”.To hear this popclassic, clickhere.)
Aren’t you loving the warmer weather? Spring is on its way! The increase in temperatures means being able to, once again, spend some walking time (following social distance) with a friend in the great outdoors!
Isn’t this sweet? I found this photo of my son’s dog, the other day. :o)
Take a LookAt TheseIreland and St. Patrick’sDay-Related BlogPosts
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I found this sign humorous, while visitingCong in Ireland.:o) September 2013.
You are so creative. I’m sure the grandkids love spending time with you.
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Thank you! :o)
Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you too. Enjoyed your blog….so much info. And your new sign is cute, it should stand the weather just fine! LOVE YOUR SURPRISED FACE…..oooops!
:o). Thank you for your kind words! Yes, that was a definite oops! ha
Great Blog. Food looks very good. Maybe you should do a recipe blog.
Thank you. :o)
A nice collection of recipes!
Thank you for reading!
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