Still Celebrating


The St. Patrick’s Day celebration continues.

Today is the 39th annual St. Patrick’s Road Race in nearby Holyoke – a race that CPT America ran twice, shortly after we moved here. It’s a 10K and the first race he’d ever run where volunteers handed out beer alongside water at the various check points.

Tomorrow, in the same town, the 60th annual St. Patrick’s Day parade kicks off. This is the one Grand Colleen will be appearing in – and she’ll need every stitch of that gorgeous Aran sweater with the chilly temperatures they’re forecasting. The weatherman suggested hats and gloves for everyone. Meanwhile, city workers are busy painting large green shamrocks on the pavement so parade participants can easily follow the route.

Here at home, I have plans to whip up some Irish Soda Bread to go with some not-very-Irish chili we’re having tonight. I found the recipe in the local paper. “Some suggest that the real Irish soda bread had neither sugar nor dried fruit or caraway seeds,” the author claims in the article that accompanied the recipe. Which is good, because the currants – or raisins – are what my children object to. Now, I can leave them out in good conscience.

On the same page, below the Irish Soda Bread recipe, was a recipe for Guinness Porter Cake – a concoction filled with raisins, dried cherries, prunes, and (of course) Guinness. I’d love to try this recipe, but am certain I’d be the only one eating it, so, I’ll probably pass. But I will clip the recipe and keep it on hand, just in case. It’s too unusual and intriguing not to.

From the dining room table, with a little grey cat next to me for company,

Mrs. Smythe

6 Comments on “Still Celebrating

  1. I’ve always wondered what true soda bread is like. The recipe I use doesn’t call for raisins. But it does have four Tablespoons of sugar. Hmm . . . the intrigue . . .

    • I know! Now I’m questioning all the soda bread recipes I see – asking, “is this one really Irish?” I guess I need to find a good, trustworthy Irish cookbook or something.

  2. No sugar, dried fruit, and definitely no caraway seeds in Soda Bread. I can’t even imagine what American Irish Soda Bread tastes like. I love Guinness Porter Cake, but haven’t made it in years.

    • Reminds me of the time we had an “American-style” pizza in Germany. It came to the table with roasted potatoes and corn on top. I thought, I’ve been eating American pizza for decades and I’ve never seen anything like this! Funny how recipes get muddled. CPT America said he’d eat Guinness Porter Cake if I left the prunes out…but then, maybe then it wouldn’t be Guinness Porter Cake anymore….

  3. I always wish I was Irish this time every year. Did have some corned beef and cabbage at a local restaurant last weekend. Very fatty and not very good, which was disappointing.

    • Sorry to hear that! I think I’ve only eaten it once in my life – and that was when Auntie G. made it for us.