March 17, 2011 at 8:39 a.m.

Potatoes are traditional Irish favorite

Potatoes are traditional Irish favorite
Potatoes are traditional Irish favorite

Oh, the wonder of it all! Today it is 'wearin of the green' day, or St. Patrick's Day and if you're not one who has Irish blood in ye, at least wear somethin' green in honor of the patron saint of Ireland. There is an old Irish saying which says, "The world is made up of two kinds of people: those who are Irish and those who wish they were!" Whether or not you're Irish, did you know that in our United States there are more people of Irish descent than there are in Ireland. Who will plant the "Irish potatoes" in Ireland if they're all over here?

A common meal on St. Patty's Day would consist of, corned beef and cabbage, carrots, potatoes, and a number of green salads, green desserts and of course green shamrocks to adorn the table in celebration of St. Patrick's Day.

Potatoes were served at almost every meal in Ireland, so be good lassies and add these potato recipes to your "special spuds" recipe file. Be just a tich of Irish and prepare one of these recipes for tonight's supper.

PATRICIAN POTATOES

6 large russet potatoes

Milk

3 c. creamed cottage cheese

3/4 c. sour cream or plain yogurt

1-1/2 T. minced onions

Salt and pepper to taste

1/4 c. (1/2 stick) butter or margarine, cut in 1/4-inch slice

Sliced toasted almonds

Peel potatoes, cube and cook 15 minutes or until tender; drain. Mash, with a little milk. Add next 5 ingredients, mixing well. Turn into a greased 2-qt. casserole dish. Dot with butter; sprinkle with almonds. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, or until heated through.

Makes 8 servings.

+++++

CREAMY HASH-BROWN POTATOES

1 lb. frozen hash browns, thawed

1 c. grated Cheddar or Swiss cheese

1/2 c. sour cream or plain yogurt

2 green onions, sliced 1/4-inch, using most of green

1 can cream of celery or chicken soup

3/4 c. coarsely crushed cornflakes or French fried onion rings

1/4 c. butter or margarine, melted

In a large bowl, combine first 5 ingredients. Turn into a 1-1/2 qt. casserole dish. Combine cornflakes and butter; sprinkle over top. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes or until has browns are tender.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

+++++

If you are having a party, you might want to try this appetizer.

NUTTY SHAMROCK CHEESE SPREAD

2 c. finely ground pecans

1 medium clove garlic, minced - then minced again into very fine pieces

2-8 oz. pkgs. cream cheese, softened (you may use 1/3 less fat cheese)

2 T. steak sauce - your choice

Couple drops green food coloring - optional

1 c. finely snipped fresh parsley

Crackers or thin party rye bread slices

In medium bowl blend together first 5 ingredients. Form into a ball. (If too stiff, add a little milk or cream). Put ball on serving tray. With fingers, shape into a shamrock (like a 3-leaf clover), making it about 1 or 2-inches high, depending on how large or high you want to make it. Press parsley onto top and sides. Chill until firm, 1 to 2 hours. Serve surrounded by crackers or bread slices.

Makes about 4 c. spread.

TFD: An Irish toast to your friends: On this day, and every day, may your right hand always be stretched out in friendship and never in want. Have a fun St. Patty's Day celebration!

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