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Home on the Range
St. Paddy's Day Calls
For These Tasty Ideas

By Seared Lightly

Sure and Begorra, we should all drink to the ol' sod, whether or not our ancestors came from the Emerald Isle, for March includes St. Patrick's Day on the 17th, and we've got some favorite recipes for a proper celebration. The following all include a portion of beer to enliven your taste buds. Now, we aren't recommending the sour soda water that major U.S. producers call beer...we stress the taste-laden brews that have made Oregon a true beer lovers' nirvana.

First, we urge you to concoct this version of that traditional shamrock celebratory meal...

CORNED BEEF & CABBAGE

4-6 lb. Corned Beef Brisket as found at your local purveyor
2 tbsp. Dark Brown Sugar
2 Bay Leaves
16 small white potatoes, peeled
6 medium Carrots, halved
1 large head Cabbage, cut in wedges
2 12 oz. bottles of golden micro-brewed Lager Beer

Cover the Brisket with water in a large cast iron pot, add Sugar & Bay Leaves, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cover for 2 hours. Then add the spuds and carrots and return to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 30 minutes covered. Add Beer & Cabbage, cover and cook at a
simmer for 15 minutes. Remove Bay Leaves, drain vegetables, reserving the cooking liquid and let meat stand for 10-15 min. before slicing cross-grain and plattering. Place cooking liquid in a gravy boat for serving. Sprinkle fresh chopped parsley generously over the sliced meat.

Mix 1 cup Sour Cream, 2 tbsp. Dijon Mustard & 1 tsp Sugar for an added zip to spread on the meat. Prior to the main course, stir up a batch of the following...


BEER CHEESE SOUP

2 tbsp. Chopped Red Onion
1/4 lb. salted Butter
2 cans Cream of Celery Soup
1 cup micro-brewed Dark Beer (Stout preferred)
Generous shakes of Worcestershire Sauce
1 « cups Half & Half Cream
3/4 lb. Velveeta brand Cheese, cubed
Chopped Parsley, Paprika for sprinkling

Saute' Onion in a large saucepan in butter...stir in the cans of soup, Beer, Half & Half, Worcestershire and reduce heat to low, stir in Velveeta until it melts. This rich mixture will serve 6 in bowls, sprinkle Parsley & Paprika over each serving

For a proper Irish celebration, search your local bakeries for Irish Soda Bread, a dark, rich and flavorful accompaniment.

BEER DIP

2 8 oz. packages Cream Cheese
« cup micro-brewed Stout or other dark Beer
1 envelope Ranch Salad Dressing Mix
2 cups shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese

In large bowl, beat Cream Cheese, Beer and Dressing Mix until smooth, stir in the shredded Cheddar 'til all is smooth and dippable for Tostitas.

While we're talkin' Beer, we'll pass on our favorite way to prepare a whole fryer Chicken (4-5 lbs.)...

DRUNKEN CHICKEN

Whole Fryer, sprayed generously all over with a mixture of 2 cups Apple Cider, 2 tbsp.
Balsamic Vinegar

1 tbsp. Kosher Salt 1 tsp. Paprika
1 tsp. Sugar 1 tsp. Whole Grain Mustard
1 tsp. Onion Powder 1 12 oz. bottle, micro-brewed Lager Beer
1 tsp. Garlic Powder
1 tsp. Cayenne Pepper

Mix these ingredients in a large bowl, then rub all over into the chicken, refrigerate for at least an hour to set the flavor. Then cook the bird, standing upright on a Spanek vertical roasting rack in a roasting pan in a 350 degree oven for an hour or slightly more for a rich, golden brown hue.

© 2010 Oregon Magazine