Thursday, March 18, 2010

Themed Food: St. Patrick's Day

We love to celebrate holidays at our house ("we" meaning me and I con the kids into it). St. Patrick's Day holds many food traditions for us, so I thought I would share some of them.

One thing I do is dye just about everything green. A few things I have dyed: milk, eggs, pancakes, waffles, mac and cheese, sugar cookies and homemade bread. Other ideas I have are to dye white sauced pasta or soup, or vanilla pudding. I have also heard people making green jello!

This year I bought green colored sandwich bread at a local bakery. This bakery will dye bread any color you want, even rainbow! So for breakfast we did our egg in a hole with the green bread, then for lunch we had peanut butter and jelly on the green bread too (with a side of green milk).

For dinner we always have Rueben sandwiches. This day we paired it with green beans and green apples. I love Reuben’s, and this recipe is the only one I have ever used (why mess with perfection?)

Reuben Sandwich
1 c mayonnaise
¼ c ketchup
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp parsley
1 tsp grated onion (or onion power)
1 tbsp horseradish
6 slices rye or marble rye
1 ¼ pounds corned beef
12 oz well drained sauerkraut
6 slices swiss cheese

Preheat oven to 375. Make dressing by mixing all ingredients together, and then set aside. Assemble Reuben by toasting the bread and buttering it, and then layer the dressing, cheese, meat and sauerkraut. Place assembled Reuben on a baking sheet and put it in the over for 5-7 minutes.

 This year I also made a special St. Patrick’s Day dessert: and Irish cream chocolate trifle! This was fun to make, but next time I will be sure to have an actual trifle dish to put it in. I also did not buy liquid coffee creamer, I bought powdered, and so I had to make it liquid in order to use it in the recipe. To do this I added 1 cup of boiling water to 1 cup of the powdered creamer and whisked until smooth. From here you can add up to a cup of cold water, depending on how strong you want the flavor.
*Side note: coffee creamer is just flavoring, it is not coffee, nor does it taste like coffee; it is more like flavored milk.

Irish Cream Chocolate Trifle

1 package (18-1/4 ounces) devil's food cake mix
1 cup refrigerated Irish creme nondairy creamer
3-1/2 cups cold milk
2 packages (3.9 ounces each) instant chocolate pudding mix
3 cups whipped topping (I dyed it green)
12 spearmint candies, crushed (I did not use these because I didn't have any. If you want the mint flavor, jusy add some mint extract to the cool whip)

Prepare and bake cake according to package directions, using a
greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour.
With a meat fork or wooden skewer, poke holes in cake about 2 in.
apart. Slowly pour creamer over cake; refrigerate for 1 hour. In a large bowl, whisk the milk and pudding mixes for 2 minutes. Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set.
Cut cake into 1-1/2-in. cubes; place a third of the cubes in a 3-qt.
glass bowl. Top with a third of the pudding, whipped topping and
candies; repeat layers twice. Store in the refrigerator. Yield:
14-16 servings.

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