Staying in for St. Patrick’s Day? Here’s what to make.

March 18, 2024

You don’t have to be drinking a pint of Guinness in an Irish pub calling “top o’ the morning to ya!” to anyone who’ll listen to celebrate this St. Patrick’s Day. If staying in is more your speed this weekend, press play on your favorite Irish music playlist and bring a little Celtic spirit into your kitchen with these recipes.

Dublin Coddle (Irish Sausage and Potato Stew)

Sheryl Julian writes: “Irish residents used to make Dublin Coddle with whatever meat was in the fridge. It’s meant to be a catch-all dinner of lamb, beef, or pork with potatoes and onions. It has evolved into a dish of sausages, bacon (Irish bacon is meaty and less smoked than ours), potatoes, onions, and carrots. Everything is layered in a dish and sent into a low oven for hours. In this stewy version, the bacon is browned first to release the fat. You can also use Canadian bacon with a little oil in the pan because it’s so lean. Pork sausages brown in the bacon fat, then you pour most of the fat off before cooking onions. Whisk a little flour into the onions to absorb that remaining fat. Add chicken stock to make a light sauce, then tuck potatoes and carrots into the pan. Let it bake for 50 minutes, then turn up the oven heat and brown the top for 10 minutes. The dish seems like it might be heavy, but it isn’t. Lovely aromas in the kitchen afterwards.”

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Irish Boxty.Karoline Boehm Goodnick

Boxty (Irish Potato Pancakes)

From Karoline Boehm Goodnick: “Boxty, the Irish version of potato pancakes, are made of both mashed and grated potatoes that are bound with flour and buttermilk and pan-fried in butter. Creamy and rich on the inside, crispy on the outside, the pancakes make a hearty breakfast treat served with bacon and eggs. But they are also delicious later in the day, with smoked salmon as an appetizer, or with lamb stew. The recipe doubles or triples easily for a crowd or for diners with bigger appetites. If working with large batches, keep them warm in a 200-degree oven.”

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Irish brown breadSheryl Julian for The Boston Globe

Irish Brown Bread

In her recipe for Irish brown bread, Julian writes: “Irish cooks can make brown bread, one of a group of ‘soda breads,’ with their eyes closed. When homes only had open fires for cooking, an iron pot called a ‘bastible’ was filled with soda-bread dough and hung over the fire to bake. One way to imitate this method is to set the dough inside a heavy enamel-coated Dutch oven with a lid, which makes a firm crust and soft crumb. You can also bake it in a cast-iron skillet loosely covered with foil or on a parchment-lined sheet uncovered. This dough is mixed with whole-wheat and all-purpose flour, but without yeast or sugar, so it isn’t sweet like some soda breads. The bread is done when you can tap it on the bottom with your knuckles and the sound is hollow. Serve with butter or jam or both.”

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Buttermilk soda bread with walnuts and raisins.Sheryl Julian

Buttermilk Soda Bread

Lisa Yockelson writes: “A raisin-studded soda bread gets a little heft from toasted walnuts and a small amount of yellow cornmeal. The dough is mixed with buttermilk, shaped into the classic round with an ‘x’ cut on top, and baked until golden. The bread has lots of flavor with a nice golden crust whose edges crumble a little when you cut into the round. Save the crumbs to sprinkle on your cup of yogurt.”

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Golden Raisin Soda Bread BunsSheryl Julian for The Boston Globe

Golden Raisin Soda Bread Buns

Also from Yockelson: “For St. Patrick’s Day, these rustic, tender golden-raisin buns are shaped from Irish soda-bread dough. The tender dough is always made with buttermilk, which was left from making butter. As you’re shaping the dough, add enough additional buttermilk, one tablespoon at a time, until there are no crumbly bits at the bottom of the bowl. Let the dough sit in the refrigerator for one to two hours to rest; the flour will continue to absorb the liquids so the dough is easier to handle. Shape the rounds, sprinkle generously with sugar, and use kitchen scissors, held vertically, to snip the traditional ‘x’ in the tops before baking.”

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Irish Soda Farls.Karoline Boehm Goodnick

Irish Soda Farls

From Boehm Goodnick: “Many Irish-American bakers are heading into their kitchens to whip up a batch of soda bread this week. There’s another bread made with the same basic ingredients that’s popular in Ireland but less well known here. Irish Soda Farls, named for their thin, triangular shapes, are a smaller, simpler version of the well-known soda loaf, minus add-ins like currants and caraway seeds. The individual farls are cooked in a dry skillet, rather than in the oven. The liquid in the batter is buttermilk, but you can substitute 1 scant cup of whole milk mixed with 1 teaspoon of vinegar or lemon juice. The farls require only 15 to 20 minutes in the pan, and because they’re so easy, they’re a sure-fire recipe even for novice bakers. Once they’re cooked, split the warm triangles open and slather them with butter or jam. They do well as the vehicle for a tasty condiment. Or complete your breakfast with runny-yolked eggs.”

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Aidan McGee’s Irish shortbread.Jonathan Wiggs/Globe Staff

Irish Shortbread

Julian writes: “Traditional shortbread has a very high proportion of butter to flour, and only a little sugar and salt to round out the list of ingredients. You can make Dubliner Irish Pub’s version in a food processor. Whir the dough until it forms clumps, not a ball, and press them into a small rimmed baking sheet (called a quarter-sheet pan; or use another pan that measures about 9-by-12 inches). Smooth the top, prick it well, and bake for 2½ hours in a low oven. Don’t rush it. The shortbread should be fully cooked but pale when it’s done, never light brown, and the texture will melt in your mouth.”

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Corned beef and cabbage.Sally Pasley Vargas

Corned beef and cabbage

And of course, if it’s just not St. Patrick’s Day without the traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner, here’s Sally Pasley Vargas’s modern take. “Corned beef and cabbage, the Irish-American dish, is a tradition on St. Patrick’s Day. In these parts, it’s also known as New England Boiled Dinner, and making it can be about as complicated as throwing a hunk of meat into a pot with cabbage and other vegetables. But with a little more effort and a few subtle tweaks, you can turn this dish into something to write home to your Irish grandmother about.”

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Sheryl Julian can be reached at . Chris Morris can be reached at . Follow her .

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