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March 30, 2017

I love good, buttery shortbread, and this recipe from King Arthur Flour, delivers just that!  If you do not have a shortbread mold, you can still make this recipe by using an 8 inch cake pan.  I found my shortbread mold at Amazon.  They have a very nice selection of molds if you are interested.  This Irish Cream Shortbread recipe is a perfect finish for my Irish themed month.  It would make a lovely addition to an afternoon tea or coffee or as a quick sweet to brighten your day!

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

If you use salted butter, make sure to reduce the salt to a 1/8 teaspoon.

I like to use Kerrygold Irish butter for this recipe.

When mixing in the flours, the dough will not come together.  It will be crumbly.  Press the crumbly dough together firmly, and shape your dough into a disc for easy pressing into the mold.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) soft butter

  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (1/8 if using salted butter)

  • 1 teaspo...

March 28, 2017

Here is another great recipe from Clodagh's Irish Kitchen by Clodagh McKenna.  I have been mashing potatoes for over twenty-five years, and I thought my potatoes were pretty good.  That was until I tried these creamed potatoes!  The ingredients are simple, but the procedure is what makes these potatoes "creamy".  Check out this recipe and taste these creamy mashed potatoes for yourself!

Bon Appetit!

Ingredients:

2 1/4 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes

1/3 cup warm milk

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (optional)

3 1/2 tablespoons butter

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Place the potatoes, whole and unpeeled, in a saucepan with the largest ones at the bottom, and fill the pan halfway with water.  Cover the pan and place over high heat.  When the water begins to boil, drain off about half of it, leaving just enough for the potatoes to steam.  When the potatoes are cooked, about 30 to 40 minutes depending on their size, drain and peel (hold them in a kitchen towel if...

March 23, 2017

Here is another great recipe from Clodagh's Irish Kitchen cookbook by Clodagh McKenna.  This is one of the best chocolate cakes I have ever tasted.  It is rich, dark, and sweet.  I was not too sure about putting beer in my cake, but it really adds a beautiful depth to the chocolate.  I love the cream cheese frosting in this recipe too!  The frosting serves as a nice counterpoint to the cakes dark chocolatey richness.  As Clodagh says in her cookbook, "Guinness adds a wonderful richness, making this the perfect Irish cake."   I couldn't have said it any better!

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

When frosting your cake you can frost the side (as I did) if you desire.

I like to cool my cake for at least 2 hours before frosting it.

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/4 sticks plus 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter

  • 1 1/4 cups Guinness

  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted

  • 2 large eggs

  • 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons superfine sugar

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 3/4...

March 21, 2017

The Irish theme continues with this amazing recipe from Clodagh's Irish Kitchen cookbook.  The recipe starts the cooking process on the stovetop (to ensure the chicken skin gets 'crisp') and finishes cooking in the oven.  The sauce is lovely with a hint of tarragon and really compliments the chicken.  This creamy Irish whiskey sauce is thin, but the mushrooms give the sauce more substance.  I found this recipe easy to prepare and elegant to serve!  Also, it goes great with the Irish creamed potatoes that I will be posting later this week.

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

I am not a fan of wild mushrooms, so I used about 10 ounces of cremini mushrooms for the sauce.  I removed the stems and quartered them to keep a bit of 'chunk' in the recipe.

The original recipe calls for 'supreme' chicken filets (breast with wing bone attached).  I did not find this cut in my local grocery store, and I did not request it from the meat department because of time constra...

March 17, 2017

I like making this bread, because it is quick, easy, and almost foolproof.  This particular recipe is adapted from the Irish Cooking Bible, and I love the versatility of it.  You can omit the spice and herb variations and just bake a basic loaf.  You can also substitute these spices and herbs with your own combinations.  The cross is cut into the top of the bread to help it rise, and according to Irish folklore, the cross will both ward away the devil and bring good luck or get rid of any mischievous fairies in your kitchen.

Bon Appetit

Tip:

How deep you cut your cross in the dough will effect the outcome of the bread.  There is no wrong or right way to cut your cross.  If this bread becomes a favorite you will develop your own preference.  I have two different loafs for examples of a minimum cut and a deeper cut.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme, fi...

March 14, 2017

Have you been looking for a good lamb stew?  Look no further!  You found it.  I love the simplicity of this rustic dish.  It also has amazing savory flavors that are hard to resist!  Serve this classic stew with Irish soda bread (our next blog post), and you will have a hearty delicious meal that will get you warm in no time.

Bon Appetit!

Tips: 

Plan ahead!  Read through the recipe before you begin cooking.  The directions call for an oven proof Dutch oven (6 quart).  If you do not have an oven proof Dutch oven, you can transfer the meat and veggies to a baking dish after you are done cooking them on the stove top, and then continue as directed.  Save the pot you cooked the meat and veggies in previously, because you will need it again to finish off the stew.

This stew can be made a day ahead.  The flavor will get even better over time!

Ingredients:

  • 1 and 1/2 pounds lamb stew meat

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

  • 3 large onions, quartered

    ...

March 9, 2017

Here is a pie that would be wonderful for any St. Patrick's Day celebration.  I found this yummy dessert in Betty Crocker's New Cookbook and had to try it!  This pie is perfect for the month of March.  If you are a fan of Bailey's Irish Cream, you will definitely love this pie.  For those who prefer a non-alcoholic version, you can replace the liqueur with Irish Cream creamer.  The marshmallow filling is delicious, and the chocolate cookie crumb crust is utterly mouthwatering.  An Irish cream pie is not a pot of gold, but I wouldn't mind finding this pie at the end of the rainbow!

Bon Appetit!

Tip: I used Nabisco's Famous Chocolate Wafers for the cookie crust.  If you cannot find these wafers, you can use Oreo cookies with the filling removed.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup milk

  • 32 large jet-puffed marshmallows

  • I/3 cup Irish Cream liqueur (like Baileys) or Irish Cream creamer

  • 1 and 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

  • Grated semi-sweet baking chocolate,...

March 7, 2017

It is said that everybody is Irish on Saint Patrick's Day, and what better way to celebrate than with corned beef and cabbage!  This recipe turns out a delicious meal that pretty much cooks itself!  It will take you about fifteen minutes in the morning to put the ingredients together in a slow cooker, and at supper time, you will have a wonderful Irish meal!  That leaves you (the cook) with lots of free time to join in the St. Patrick's Day festivities!  Yay!  And as a bonus, I've included a horseradish mustard sauce that is a great pairing with the beef.  I know my family and I enjoyed it.  Your luck is guaranteed with this easy, mouthwatering recipe.  You will want to dance a happy jig this St. Patrick's Day with your corned beef and cabbage!

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

  1. You may add the corned beef brine to the slow cooker.  Just keep in mind that it will increase the sodium levels in the recipe.

  2. When the corned beef and cabbage is done cooking, I like...

March 2, 2017

This is a wonderful side dish that pairs well with the steak pinwheels, but they can compliment any main meal that needs a side.  These little potatoes are packed with amazing flavor that will make your taste buds dance.  This recipe is quick and easy to do.  If you are planning to make the steak pinwheels, you can even roast the potatoes at the same time you roast your steak.  There's no reason not to try these delicious potatoes!

Bon Appetit!

Tip:

Granulated garlic is coarser than powdered garlic.  You can find it in the spice aisle of your grocery store.  I would not substitute this ingredient!  It really makes a big difference in this recipe.

Ingredients:

1 and 1/2 pounds small red potatoes, quartered

1 tablespoon olive oil

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1 teaspoon granulated garlic

1/8 teaspoon dried thyme

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 425F.  In a medium bowl, coat potatoes with oil, salt, and pepper.  Transfer the potatoes to a baking...

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