Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!!

This is a no brainer, folks. I mean, really. Kav, for you, I'd suggest a lovely bit of bread (and I hate soda bread so I won't be suggesting that HERE, ever. I remember in James Beard's "Beard on Bread" cookbook, he said the same thing. I've loved him more, ever since!  ;)  Thank heavens for YEAST....

Corned beef round or brisket.
Six large potatoes
Six large carrots
1/2 head cabbage (if desired, my kids don't eat cooked cabbage)
One onion, if desired (I don't use the onion in this. I use it in beef stew where the meaty gravy takes on a nice oniony essence, but I think the onion overwhelms the other flavors in Corned Beef. So forget the onion. Really. Pretend I didn't even mention it, okay?)

Put the corned beef into a BIG POT. I like my big soup kettle, it's so old fashioned looking. Cover with water. Be sure to add in the little spice packet that comes with the corned beef (oh, they're a delicious addition!!!!) and the juices from the bag.  Do not think about what's IN those juices, just add 'em.

Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 3-4 hours, filling the home air with delightful scents and yumminess.


Add the peeled potatoes and carrots, cut in halves or quarters. Cook for about 30 minutes more (more or less depending on how small your veggies are) Add the cabbage for the last ten minutes.

Remove veggies onto a platter. Place in 225 degree oven to keep warm while you slice the beef. It's easier to slice the beef across the grain.... Now you're scratching your head and saying "WHAT????"  That just means slice it on the diagonal. So instead of going back and forth across the meat, angle it on the cutting board and slice from the narrowest end up.  Easy peasy! I promise. Thin slices work well, but Dave and I.... sigh... we just dig in, so there is no fancy schmancy slicing being done at our house today!

 So Amazingly Delicious!  Yes, these are the real St. Patrick's day pics.... and then THIS HAPPENED A LITTLE AFTER MIDNIGHT!!!

Congratulations to Hearthside Kennels "Thistle Rock Heart o' Hearthside" call name "Sadie" on the birth of four adorable Golden Retriever puppies!!!  Way to go, Sadie!!!!


Who needs sleep when you're surrounded by puppies, kittens and babies?????



This is an Allegany County dessert that I featured in my April 2011 Love Inspired release: "Reunited Hearts". (I LOVE THAT STORY!!!)

 The credit goes to the Texas Hot restaurant in Wellsville New York because that's where I first had this amazing bit of DELICIOUSNESS!!!!

Here's what you're going to need:
Graham Crackers.
Eggs (4 eggs, separated, whites in one bowl, yolks in another)
Corn Starch

I think that's it. I'll add other stuff if I discover I've forgotten something but you won't know because you'll just think I was smart and remembered it all, right?   ;)

First, Graham Cracker Crust:

1 1/2 cups finely crushed graham crackers (I just crush mine on the counter with my trusty rolling pin!)
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup melted butter

Mix first three ingredients. Add melted butter, mix again. Press into 8 or 9 inch pie pan. (If using a DEEP pie pan, you might want to double the recipe, use what you need and keep the rest in a freezer bag for garnishing things at a later date.) Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown, about 7-9 minutes. Cool.

In the meantime, make the custard filling, my fave custard recipe from the old Cream Corn Starch box. I've shared this before, it's a family favorite for layer cake filling, for cannolis, for trifle.... Just a great vanilla pudding that doesn't separate quickly.

Melt in saucepan:

1/2 cup butter

Remove from heat. Add in:

1 1/3 cups sugar mixed with 1/2 cup cornstarch (mixing the sugar and cornstarch ahead of time prevents lumps!)
Mix with butter. Then add:

3 Cups Milk
4 egg yolks

Whisk well. Cook over medium to medium high heat, stirring constantly. I'm reading Mia Ross's Hometown Family right now (she's got RUTHY in the book, LOL!!!!) and I read while I'm stirring because otherwise I'll walk away and burn the pudding. This has happened often.

When pudding comes to a boil, boil for one minute. Remove from heat. Add two teaspoons vanilla. Whisk in well. Pour into pie shell.  Set aside.

To make meringue:

4 egg whites
6 Tablespoons sugar, more or less
Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form, adding sugar one tablespoon full at a time as mixture thickens. Pile onto pie, smoothing to edges, making sure meringue touches crust all around. Top with meringue. Bake at 350 degrees until meringue is golden brown and looks dry, about 7-10 minutes.  Ovens vary so just kind of keep an eye on it, but it's delightfully simple.

Remove from oven. Cool. Chill.

This is an old-fashioned great tasting people pleasing pie. One worthy of a book! And I'm so glad that Trent and Alyssa got to share a piece of it in Reunited Hearts.... While she was pretending to just wander by... and he just happened to be having lunch with a coworker.... I love how us girls think, LOL!


  1. You hate Irish Soda Bread. OOOOH my hubs brought home some with currants, yumola.

    But that pie is certainly a yummer too.

    Happy St. Ruthy Day!!

    1. What a fun day this is! :)

      Of course what I'm doing is writing....YAY!!!! And teaching two tweens how to make pillows. Letting them have a lark with my ANCIENT MATERIAL STASH from decades ago when I sewed....


      I'd rather write books! Happy St. Ruthy Day right back at ya', chica!

  2. I guess it's good that St. Patrick's Day didn't fall on a Friday with all that corned beef smelling up the joint.

    That pie sounds wonderful and easy too.

    Ruthy, will you hate me if I scrape off my meringue? I've never succeeded at making myself like it.

    1. Several years ago St. Patrick's Day fell on Friday. The local Catholic bishop (who is not a very popular person in a lot of circles, but I love my Catholic parish, my pastor, my friends, just a wonderful experience all around...) DID NOT give Catholics permission to eat meat and it was Lent....

      The surrounding bishops all did. I'm surprised we didn't have an Irish Catholic version of an uprising, but we're cool cats.... we just ate what we wanted and let God sort it out! ;)

    2. Wow! I'm surprised. We always get that dispensation except I always wonder if they're really just joking.

      I was at a teacher's conference all day plus it is Ted's birthday so no corned beef. He chose chicken. Apparently the NY corned beef doesn't quite measure up to what his mother used to make back in Boston. (Ssssh. I think it's just his faulty memory.)

    3. Mary, no doubt, but Boston is famous for great Irish dishes.... Not so much for baseball.

      HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Sorry. Couldn't resist being MEAN. Blame it on Sadie and lack of sleep. I like chicken, too, but chicken's an 'any old day' meal.... BUT... HAPPY BIRTHDAY, TED!!!! GOD BLESS YOU, MY BASEBALL LOVING FRIEND!

  3. Andrea, scrape it off and use whipped cream, darling girl! I like it that way, too but the traditionalist in me said to make it with the original meringue... Either is delicious!

  4. Ruthy, thanks for the corned beef recipe! I'm not Irish, but I love St. Patrick's Day! Love cooked cabbage, especially with the flavor of corned beef! Yummy! I even like soda bread if it's fruity.


  5. You don't like soda bread?! OY! I love it and it's so easy to make!!!! I whip one up whenever I run short of bread in between grocery shops. It's pretty darn hardy, I'll admit but oh la la with butter and jam for breakfast to go along with oatmeal. Or just butter to go along with some nice hearty soup like the corn chowder I'm going to be making.

    And thanks for the cream pie recipe. Would you believe it? I've never had a cream pie either! My y'all are expanding my culinary horizons!

    Happy writing, Ruthy!

    1. Checking in from SEWING CENTRAL.... THIS JUST IN!!!! Casey and Kathryn have pieced together 16-patch pillow tops in three hours this morning!!!! And the Golden Retriever "Sadie" looks like she might be in early labor... And the sun came out. And God is good! :) I did get nearly 1000 words done on my synopsis for book one of a prospective series, so that's good too!

      Kav, you must do cream pie. It's best eaten fresh because the crust will get soggy after a couple of days, so you must take it to friends and enjoy together!!! And note the Andrea comment... whipped cream works great instead of meringue if you'd prefer!

  6. puppies?! quilting?! :-)

    what's soda bread and why do they call it 'corned'? is there corn in it or something? dont't think I've ever had the stuff...

    been reading the posts when i get a chance -just haven't been commenting - I think blogger hates me or something and other times just haven't had anything to say (for a change!)

    I want a puppy but I'm at my 2 dog limit - otherwise the HOA will be on me. I thought I'd found a nice patio home with a decent yard then saw the price - yikes! they took away the most of the yard and increased teh price - either I stay where I am or I look for key words like 'shack' and 'cottage' instead of 'italian villa' and 'mediterranean'!

    hope Sadie does ok with the puppies...


    1. Susanna, yes!!! SHACKS are affordable.... Cottages????

      Dagnabbit, not so much! Sadie's doing great, thank you for sending your good wishes and Corned Beef means it's brined to soak up the seasoning and develop the more stringy texture that goes along with it.

      I hated it as a kid.

      Love it now. Go figure. What do kids know???

  7. I'm a day late. Was on a clergy spouses retreat since Friday. Had a great time!! But totally forgot to wear green yesterday since I was away. Also, did not eat anything traditional. When I was a kid we always ate corned beef and cabbage. I never could stand it! But maybe I'll have to try it again, Ruthy, since you said you felt the same as a kid. :)

  8. Ruthy, I LOVE corned beef and cabbage. And Sadie? She is just a doll. What a sweet mama. And her babies are adorable.