While most of the world considers Corned Beef and Cabbage
synonymous with St. Patrick's Day, this popular meal has its origins
in America, and is not a traditional Irish recipe. Beef was an expensive
food item that was unavailable to most Irish citizens, and was generally
exported to France, England and the Americas. As we all know, corned
beef is a salt-cured brisket, traditionally packed in barrels with coarse
grains, aka "corns" of salt. In the 17th century, salting
beef become a major industry in the Irish port cities of Cork and Dublin
for exportation. The most similar traditional Irish dish is Bacon and
Cabbage, with the bacon akin to Canadian-style bacon or ham. Corned
Beef and Cabbage became popular in the U.S. after Irish immigrants used
corned beef instead of pork, due to the low cost of corned beef in the
Its still a great dish, and Corned Beef and Cabbage
always graces my St. Patricks Day table, though I prefer the hard-to-find
Savoy cabbage over the popular Dutch cabbage, found in U.S. markets.
We all have our favorite Corned Beef and Cabbage recipes,
so here are a few fun side dishes for your St. Patrick's Day celebration:
Irish Soda Bread
3 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups buttermilk
Preheat oven to 425°F. Mix flour, baking soda and
salt in large bowl. Mix in just enough buttermilk to form moist clumps.
Form dough into ball. Turn out onto lightly flour surfaced and knead
just until dough holds together for about 1 minute. Shape dough into
a 6-inch-diameter by 2-inch-high circle. Place on lightly floured baking
sheet. Cut 1-inch-deep X across top of bread, extending almost to edges.
Bake until bread is golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped on bottom.
Baking time is about 35 minutes. Transfer bread to rack and cool completely.
Champ or Poundies Origin: Northern Ireland
2 pounds standard white potatoes, peeled and halved
1 cup whole milk
1 bunch spring green onions (scallions), thinly sliced
½ teaspoon salt, or to taste
¼ cup Irish butter
1 pinch freshly ground black pepper to taste
Place potatoes into large pot, and fill with enough
water to cover. Bring to a boil, and cook until tender, about 20 minutes.
Drain well. Return to very low heat and allow the potatoes to dry out
for a few minutes. (You can place a clean dish towel over the potatoes
to absorb any remaining moisture.) Gently heat the milk and green onions
in a saucepan until warm. Mash the potatoes, salt and butter together
until smooth. Stir in the milk and green onion until evenly mixed. Season
with freshly ground black pepper. Serve hot in bowls. Calories be damned;
set out some extra butter to add to their servings.
Colcannon (Irish: cál ceannann, meaning
3 cups finely shredded green cabbage
1 onion, finely chopped
¼ cup water
6 cooked white potatoes, mashed
¼ cup whole milk
¼ cup Irish butter
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Place cabbage, onion, and water in a saucepan or Dutch
oven and quickly bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer about
8 minutes until tender. Add mashed potatoes, milk, butter, salt, and
pepper. Mix well, stirring often until heated through.
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Haven't been called Tad for . . .gee, maybe I've NEVER been
called Tad . . . guess I'm the only one with chutzpah enough to mention Bourdain.
--- Ken, Shutesbury, MA
I think we must have had an entirely different experience in
the UK. (Fresh Food and Real Ale week 1). We were up in Edinburgh and
they served something called Neeps & Tatties. The items were
boiled so long that I couldnt even recognize what I was eating. Come to
think of it I couldnt taste them either. Later I found that Neeps
are Turnips and Tatties are potatoes.
--- Lindy, Phoenix, AZ
My mouth was watering as I read some of your descriptions of
the fantastic fare of ... England? I had always felt smug about the lowly reputation
of British cuisine as this gave us at least one country with a worse culinary
reputation than America's. I guess I'll have to change my views. Your article
made me actually want to take a CULINARY tour of Britain. Yummy yummy yummy.
--- Sandy Miner, Portland, OR
Thanks for your note. Thanks to Traveling
Boy I get to interview a world famous chef this week who is widely recognized
as spearheading the Yummy movement in Ireland. Guess I'll have to take yet another
culinary tour a little further north and check it out... (I love my job!) ---
Very interesting, mouth-watering piece by Audrey! (A McDreamy McMeel). Your
web site is fascinating!
--- Susie, Victoria, BC
Combining travel, food, and intelligent advice -- BRILLIANT!
Your site fills a long-felt need for hungry roamers. Keep it up! It's Anthony
Bourdain with reservations and CLASS.
--- Tad, Boston, MA
Eugene Chaplin Introduces Chaplin's World Museum
in Vevey, Switzerland
Lake Geneva/ Matterhorn Region and Switzerland Tourism
recently blew into Los Angeles with the most esteemed guest, Eugene Chaplin.
A man of remarkable lineage, he is the fifth child of Oona O'Neill and Sir
Charles Spencer "Charlie" Chaplin, the grandson of playwright
Eugene O'Neill, the brother of Geraldine Chaplin and father of actress/model
Treasures of Ireland: Piped Inside Ashford Castle
The Palladian Traveler enters into a world of regal
elegance wrapped in Irish charm as he files his latest dispatch from inside
one of the Emerald Isle's most storied fortresses.
Chuuk + Wrecks = Scuba Divers' Paradise
As we dropped down to 25,000 feet I saw one of the
most extraordinary panoramas I'd ever been lucky enough to witness. The
majesty of it all and the stunning vistas that lay below and before me were
spectacular. It was as beautiful as spring's first rose, and it made me
understand why so many pilots on commercial jetliners love their job; they
get to see so many awe-inspiring sights from the cockpit. My view was that
of a vast vista of the Pacific.
Highway 49 Revisited: Exploring California's
In the 1840s, the population of California was only
14,000, but by 1850 more than 100,000 settlers and adventurers had arrived
from all over the world and they came for one reason: gold. James
Marshall had discovered the first gold nugget at Sutters Mill in El
Dorado County, creating the largest gold rush in history.
Lake Charles Family-Size Low-Key Mardi Gras
The Southwest Louisiana Mardi Gras in Lake Charles,
the second largest in Louisiana, does not need parents there to avert their
childrens eyes. This is family entertainment and children are very
much part of it. The main office of the Lake Charles CVB has costumes from
last years Mardi Gras but it also has figures to fascinate little
ones from country boys fishing for their dinner to alligators who have already
fed and are rubbing their stomachs.
Cedar Hill: Frederick Douglass' Home is as Imposing
as the Man who Lived There
Having recently received a misguided shout-out from
the president during Black History Month Frederick Douglass has done
an amazing job... it seems a good time to revisit the cultural icon's
legitimate place in history. And a visit to his home in Washington, DC
surely a place the current president might want to consider visiting himself
would be a good place to start.
Discovering Art, Culture and Cuisine in Lancaster
Lancaster has always been one of those cities that I pass
through on the way to some other destination. But last week was different.
I finally took the time to explore the place and wow, was I surprised!
I discovered a downtown full of charm, culture, cuisine and community
spirit. My recent getaway began when a friend and I drove about 60 miles
north of Los Angeles toward the Mojave Desert and checked into the Towneplace
Film Review: "My Hero Brother" A Tribute
to the Human Spirit
I just spent five days attending the Santa Barbara Film
Festival and for the most part, the features, animated shorts, and documentaries
were quite professional and compelling. That said, "My Hero Brother,"
a documentary that was particularly outstanding, told the remarkable and
inspiring story about a group of Down syndrome young men and women who
go on a two-week trek through the Himalayas with their non-Down syndrome
La Paz, Baja California Sur
Photographer Deb Roskamp focuses her camera on La Paz,
Baja California Sur. The resort property is CostaBaja, and the boat tours,
which include snorkeling at the UNESCO protected site, Isla Espiritu Santo,
were conducted by Fun Baja. The photographs are intended to speak for
Leviticus 20:13 Sent by Tom of Pasadena,
It all makes sense now. Gay marriage and marijuana
was legalized in the last election. Leviticus 20:13 states
"If a man lays with another man, he should be stoned..." We've
been interpreting it wrong all these years!