A Taste of Ireland: St. Patrick's Day Recipes
Celebrate with these healthy versions of comfort-food classics
By Elaine Magee, MPH, RD
Reviewed by Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD/LD
St. Patrick's Day isn't just about wearing green. It's the holiday when many Americans make an extra effort to eat like the Irish. It may be the one time a year when we sit down to a corned beef and cabbage dinner.
When we think of "Irish food," we often think of the irrepressible potato. But the potato actually wasn't brought to Ireland from the New World until about 300 years ago. Besides potatoes, beef and dairy farming are strong in Ireland. But the most popular meat to serve at the big Sunday meal is (drumroll, please) ? pork!
Wheat and barley crops have been growing in Ireland for about 5,000 years, and oats and rye became staple cereals about 1,500 years ago. You'll find these smart carbohydrate-rich cereals in many an Irish recipe.
Speaking of recipes, I thought you might be in the mood for a few fun Irish dishes. These are lighter renditions of the original Irish recipes, and each includes journaling suggestions.
Mini Potato Cakes
The original potato cake recipe calls for making a large, skillet-size pancake and dividing it into 4 wedges once it's browned. In this rendition, we cut out the dough into 3-inch-round mini cakes instead.
3/4 cup unbleached white flour
Serving suggestion: Although it's not called for in the original recipe, these cakes are delicious when you sprinkle grated cheddar cheese over the top while the second side is cooking. By the time the second side has browned, the cheese is melted!
Makes 10 mini cakes (about 5 servings).
Irish Chicken & Dumplings
I've been told Chicken and Dumplings is Irish comfort food at its best. Here is the "Recipe Doctored" version -- lighter in calories and fat grams, but still comforting.
2 cans (10.75 oz. each) Healthy Request reduced-fat cream of chicken soup, condensed
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