Happy St Patrick’s Day!

 What’s a holiday without new books?  The first two books probably aren’t new to you, but they are among the books I packed away to give to my kids when they have families of their own someday. The second two books are pretty new and are new favorites of mine.

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Jamie O’Rourke and the Big Potato by Tomie dePaola  

Best for ages 4-8 this book is magical in both writing and artistry. The watercolor drawings pop out of the page. The story (try to read it with an Irish accent) is hilarious.

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The Night Before St Patrick’s Day by Natasha Wing

 For the younger set. Just like the night before Christmas- except you can add leprechauns!

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Magic!: New Fairy Tales from Irish Writers

This one is brand new! I snagged a sneak peek at the library. These are fairy tales with contemporary twists. I feel good pointing it out even without reading it in its entirety.

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The Immortal Irishman: The Irish Revolutionary Who Became an American Hero

 This one is for Teens or Adults. I just finished it, and it was just released in paperback last week. Reading the life story of Thomas Francis Meagher is like taking a trip through history. His career spanned the Great Famine in Ireland, and as a Leader of a failed revolt was sent to the prison island of Tasmania. He made one of the few ever lucky escapes, and went to America where he fought in the American Civil War, and became a highly decorated General who had the ear of Lincoln. After that, he traveled to the American West, where he became Governor of Montana. He was a go-getter.

This is not a food blog as I am challenged in the Culinary Arts. I will, however, list my Mother in Law’s Irish Stew Recipe in hopes that you enjoy it as much as we do.

I should put a picture here. We’ll see if I cook this before this posts. If not imagine a nice image of stew.

Peg’s Stew

  1. 2 pounds boneless lamb for stew (may substitute beef, i.e., boneless chuck roast)
  2. 2 large onions, peeled, thickly chopped
  3. 2 lbs potatoes, peeled if desired and cut into big chunks (small new potatoes are an excellent option)
  4. 2 stalks celery, chopped, leaves included
  5. 2 carrots, chopped
  6. 1 turnip, diced (or 2 parsnip- whatever you have on hand)
  7. 1 teaspoon each kosher salt and pepper
  8. 1½ cups chicken broth
  1. I use the Crock Pot, I listed the times for the oven and stove top too.
  2. Cut lamb or beef into 1-inch cubes, removing large pieces of fat. Layer vegetables and meat in a 2 1/2 quart, lightly greased casserole or Stock Pot or Crock Pot, beginning and ending with vegetables. Add some of the salt and pepper to each layer. Add the chicken broth; cover tightly.
  3. Bake at 325 degrees for 2 hours, on the stove about the same time or in the crock pot on low for 7 hours. Stir and check for seasoning before serving. Makes 4-6 servings.