Sunday, March 14, 2010

St-Patrick's Day

Did you know that over 36 million Americans are of Irish descent?
To all of you who celebrate because you're Irish, and to all of you who aren't, but celebrate with them---

Happy St-Patrick's Day

In honor of St-Patrick's Day, I'll share a small project that has an Irish flair, followed by a recipe we'll be enjoying that day.

Several seaons ago, I helped a client personalize her front entrance hall.  The home is a cozy urban bungalow just a few steps from the lake.  She wanted her entry to be like a warm hug for her guests, wishing them well as they came to visit.  Also, she wanted to express her Irish ancestry.

Like many homes of this era, the ceiling was coved with a small plaster molding separating it from the rest of the wall. Decorative painting would higfhllight this detail and we decided that an Irish Blessing would be just the way to charm her friends.

While my client set about finding the perfect verse, I began the walls.

The walls were treated to a stone texture and then they were stained so they looked old and crusty.  This subtle color gave character to the walls.  Because the space is small,  there wasn't a good vantage point for a photo, so not all of the verse is visible.  It is, however, printed below.  


May you always walk in sunshine.
May you never want for more.
May Irish angels rest their wings beside your door.

Let's create in the kitchen!

Mashed potatoes and cabbage combine for a traditional Irish side-dish that is easy to prepare and tasty.  There are as many variations to this recipe, as there are cooks, so experiment.  You may like to add crispy bacon, or sauteed garlic with leek, or green onion.   We like it this way:

(serves 4)
3- large Idaho potatoes, scrubbed well
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 small savoy cabbage, shredded (abt 2 cups)
1/2 to 3/4 cup milk
2 Tbsp butter
1 small onion, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Don't peel potatoes.  Cut them into cubes.  Place in saucepan and cover with cold water.  Bring water to boil, reduce heat and cook until the potatoes are tender.  Drain

Meanwhile, in small skillet, heat olive oil to  saute cabbage and onion until tender.  In the potato-saucepan  heat milk and butter until the butter is melted.  Return potatoes to saucepan and mash them with the milk and butter.  Fold in the cabbage and onions.  Season to taste.

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