It’s Tuesday News Day AND Almost St. Patrick’s Day!

by kerryabdow

I have to admit something to you…  Every time I hear or read the phrase “Erin Go Bragh!”, I think of that scene in the (horrible) “Sex and the City 2” movie when Charlotte’s Irish nanny was jumping up and down and the girls nicknamed her “Erin Go Braless”…!  I can’t help it!  Sorry, Ireland!!  Aaaaaaaaaanywaaaaaaay… it’s almost “that” time of year again- where green rules and people act like fools!

Green has so many meanings – from envy to cash moh-nay to… VEGGIES! Yay, veggies!  I wondered what vegans would do with the traditionally meaty holiday and I found a bunch of recipes for Irish Stew!  How crazy is that?!  I took the basic idea but created my own version and it was – if I may say so myself – amaaaaaazing!  I made it last night and it is absolutely mouthwatering and fantastic!

It requires a fair amount of prep – lotsa chopping.

But when it’s bubblin’ away…

Look how beautiful!  Erin Go Yum!  I mean… Kathy Go Yum!

Here’s the recipe.  Again, it’s a tiny bit time-consuming, but you will end up with enough to get you through the entire Potato Famine.  Or at least a work week.  Check it out.

Kathy’s “Erin Go Yum!” Vegan Irish stew

1 onion chopped
1 cup diced celery (2 stalks)
¼ cup quinoa flour or whole wheat flour… or whatever you have on hand!
5 cups of water
2 large or 3 small Portobello mushroom caps chopped in “stew-meat-size” pieces (Appx. 2 cups)
2 med. carrots cut in round slices
1 small rutabaga diced
2 med red potatoes diced
¼ cup split red lentils
½ fresh parsley
¼ cup Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
3 vegetable bouillon cubes
2 teaspoons of nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon of “poultry seasoning” (this is a mix of thyme, rosemary, marjoram and oregano) or fresh herbs

In a large pot add onion, and celery in a little water and cook until clear. In the meantime mix the flour in about ¼ cup of water to create a thickener for the stew. Add to onions and celery and then add all the remaining water and the rest of the ingredients.  Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer on low for about 30 minutes, or until vegetables are cooked.

I have a great recipe for soda bread, too!.  If you’d like it, comment on this post and I’ll send it to you!

It’s hard to not be a little intrigued about St. Patrick’s Day and I did a little research in VegNews today…

Patrick Who?
The story of St. Patrick is one still shrouded in mystery. He was born in Britain near the end of the 4th century, and was kidnapped at the age of 16 by Irish raiders. During his time of captivity he turned to Christianity, and six years later, Patrick escaped his captors and walked 200 miles to the Irish coast. Soon after, Patrick became a priest and went back to Ireland. He is believed to have died on March 17, around 460 AD.

Parades and Parties
St. Patrick’s Day has been a religious holiday for centuries. Traditionally, the Irish would go to church in the mornings and celebrate with a feast in the afternoon. Since the day falls during the Christian season of Lent, a time when meat was traditionally prohibited, families would be allowed to eat meat during St. Patrick’s Day celebrations only. The first St. Patrick’s Day Parade actually took place in the United States; Irish soldiers fighting for the British during colonial times marched through the streets of New York City on March 17, 1762. Today, the St. Patrick’s Day parade in New York is the largest in the US, with more than 150,000 participants and nearly 3 million spectators.

A Brew (or Two) for You
Over shamrocks, leprechauns, and Irish flags, perhaps no one thing is more ubiquitous to St. Patrick’s Day than beer. Interestingly, Irish law once mandated that all pubs be closed for the holiday; it wasn’t until the 1970s that these laws were lifted. Guinness, the iconic Irish brew, is not vegan-friendly, but luckily many brewers have crafted cruelty-free versions: Wells & Young’s Double Chocolate Stout and Victory Brewery’s Donnybrook Stout are two examples.

Irish Grub
The traditional Irish fare on March 17 was bacon and cabbage. Corned beef, the better known choice for St. Patrick’s Day noshing, only became a part of the plate in the beginning of the 1900s, when Irish immigrants living in New York City made the substitution to save money. No matter how you decide to spend this year’s St. Patrick’s Day, revel in the holiday’s lively and inclusive spirit.  On March 17, everybody’s Irish. And as they say, “If you’re lucky enough to be Irish, then you’re lucky enough.” 

Well, I feel pretty lucky to be able to talk about what I love!  I’m not a vegan, but I sure love to incorporate some vegan fare into my daily life!  Cheers – I mean Sláinte! – to the greenest St. Patrick’s Day ever!

May the Irish hills caress you.
May her lakes and rivers bless you.
May the luck of the Irish enfold you.
May the blessings of Saint Patrick behold you.

~Irish Blessing