Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

Ladies and gents... I give you, Irish Soda Bread.

It looks scraggly. I know. But it was good. And I didn't cook it in my stoneware pie plate... that is where it ended up after I pulled it out of the cast iron skillet.

It was easy to do... and it was tasty. I whipped it up on Sunday morning before we headed over to my in-law's for my mother in law's traditional corned beef dinner. She may be Polish... but that lady makes a mean corned beef and cabbage.

And Ireland always makes me think of soda bread.

I think it was fifth grade... we had to do a report in some class on a country, and I got stuck in a group with "Ireland" as our country. Being a budding foodie at the time and a big fan of Jeff Smith (I still think that guy got a bad rap) and the international food stuff he was doing at the time, I decided I was going to cook.

I made Irish Soda Bread (not the ATK recipe) and potato leek soup. My mom made a special trip with the heated up soup to deliver it to my class... it was AWESOME. Everyone got a slice of soda bread and a cup of soup. Soda bread was a hit. The soup was kinda so-so for the average fifth grade taste.

I took the leftover soda bread and soup to the teacher's lounge. And I got nothing but compliments from every teacher at the school for the next week.

I also remember running to the store to purchase and then eat a half of loaf of soda bread back when I was in college. It was the day of the Chicago South Side Irish parade (RIP). If you're not familiar... it's basically a big reason to get drunk in public. I was working for a radio station at the time, and me and the other intern did all the details of the float and the scheduling and ordering up the sweatshirts for everyone at the station.... and it was my first St. Pat's where I was over 21. So I actually got sent off the float at some point to run into a liquor store that was on the parade route because we were low on Guinness on the float. Yes, it's not only a parade where the people watching are drinking... it's a parade where the people on the floats are also drinking. Someone almost feel off the float - don't remember who.

(That is the same job where Pat Boone whacked me in the back of the head with a door, hard - so hard I actually blacked out for a moment - ahhhh.... memories.....)

And there was a lady in the crowd that I will remember forever... the lady watching the parade with her husband and kids, who gave us a "woooo!" and raised her - I kid you not - box of wine as a salute.

Yeah.... I was more than slightly drunk by the time I made it back to the dorm room after that parade.

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