St. Patrick's Day finds me inviting my Irish friends to lunch.
Not an American style St. Patrick's luncheon
but one that you might find if you were in Ireland
In a cottage in the country
My table is simple:
A lace tablecloth
(but alas, not Irish lace but rather Quaker)
English Spode sets each place,
an Irish linen napkin in a silver ring
Jim's grandmother's cutlery
The menu written on a watercolor of an Irish cottage
A nod to America is the frosted and sprinkled shamrock cookie
as a favor (for tea that afternoon) --
if we had been in Ireland, it would have been shortbread --
Orange tulips (because we're protestant)
in a Waterford pitcher
(actually, the first Waterford pitcher I ever bought)
(and it pours poorly -- more useful for flowers than for iced tea!)
The view into the living room
I like my menu to reflect what perhaps an Irish housewife
would serve her friends:
An Irish leek and potato soup
(garnished with chives)
Irish Soda Bread
(not an Irish recipe but rather one from the Top of the Tower restaurant in Kansas City --
it's a recipe I've had "forever"!)
And dessert . . .
Irish Apple cake
(made with fresh apples and it is yummy)
with a big pour of custard (Bird's Custard -- I always like to keep some in the larder)
And every year after dessert we have:
served in wee cups that I've had "forever"!
And used just for this one day every year!
Irish Coffee has an interesting beginning:
The original Irish coffee was invented and named by Joe Sheridan, a head chef in Foynes, County Limerick. The coffee was conceived after a group of American passengers disembarked from a Pan Am flying boat on a miserable winter evening in the 40s. Sheridan added whiskey to the coffee to warm the passengers. After the passengers asked if they were being served Brazilian, Sheridan replied "No, it's Irish coffee"!
We had a grand time.
Sharing stories of Irish relatives and trips to Ireland.
It's one of my favorite luncheons of the year!