Saint Paddy’s Day Brunch

Saint Patrick’s Day, March 17, is forever destined to fall during the Lenten Season. While Lent itself changes, with Ash Wednesday as early as February 4 or as late as March 10, Saint Patrick’s Day is always within the Lenten cycle.

So what does that mean? For one thing, most Irish Catholics in America have been granted special dispensation. That is to say it’s okay to indulge, within reason, in the celebration of Saint Patrick’s Day. While the mass readings remain focused on the traditional readings of Lent, and the vestments are purple, it’s okay for most Irish Catholics in America to eat meat should Saint Patrick’s Day happen to be a Friday. In nearly all dioceses of the Untitled States, Saint Patrick is celebrated as an Optional Memorial. However; travel to Ireland, Australia, Wales, Scotland or New Zealand, and the Feast of Saint Patrick is considered a Solemnity. And with good reason. Saint Patrick is often referred to as an Apostle to Ireland. As Irish traveled and settled throughout the world, they have brought a bit of their homeland and patron saint with them.

Today is Saint Patrick’s Day. It’s also Thursday. Since my guys will be working today, there won’t be any big celebrations to honor the patron saint of Ireland in our house. I’ve got Bangers and Mash on the menu. (Truth be told, I love Bangers and Mash).

This is not to say we won’t be celebrating – just not today. Sunday is a grand day to host a Saint Paddy’s Day Brunch. It will give everyone time to attend Church before gathering for some wonderful foods and good time.

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day everyone!

Saint Paddy’s Brunch Menu
Saint Patrick Deviled Eggs
Crab Pesto Cheese Wheel

Asparagus Swiss Quiche
Whiskey Glazed Ham Steaks
Buttery Lemon-Kissed Irish Pancakes
Corned Beef Hash
Sheet Pan “Fried” Eggs
Toasted English Muffins

Saint Patrick Deviled Eggs
14 hard-boiled Eggs
1/4 cup Mayonnaise
1/2 cup Sour Cream
1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
2 teaspoons Red Wine Vinegar
Kosher Salt to taste
White Pepper to taste
1 cup Water
1 teaspoon White Vinegar
Green Food Coloring as needed
Parsley for garnish

Place eggs in a saucepan and add enough water to the pan to cover the eggs. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove from heat, cover and let steep for 15 minutes.

While the eggs steep, prepare an ice bath. After 15 minutes, remove eggs from the saucepan with a slotted spoon. Tap each egg to crack the shell, then plunge into the ice bath. Let cool for 20 minutes.

Peel eggs and cut in half lengthwise. Remove egg yolks and place yolks in food processor fitted with a blade. Pulse until egg yolks are a pasty consistency.

Add the mayonnaise, sour cream and mustard; mix until creamy. Mix in the red wine vinegar one teaspoon at a time. Season to taste. Store yolk filling in the refrigerator until ready to fill the colored egg whites.

Mix water, white vinegar and green food coloring in a small bowl. Add coloring a little at a time until desired shade of green is reached.

Submerge egg white, one at a time, into the colored water. Carefully turn egg white over several times for even distribution of color. Let white sit until desired color is reached.

Remove dyed egg white from bowl with a slotted spoon. Turn egg upside down on paper towels to drain. Repeat until all the egg whites have been colored. Let shells dry completely before filling.

Transfer deviled egg filling into a pastry bag or cookie press fitted with a star. Arrange green egg whites on a serving platter. Pipe filling into whites.

Finely chop parsley for garnish. Tuck additional parsley around platter for added splash of green.

Crab Pesto Cheese Wheel
1 cup crushed Vegetable-Flavored Butter Crackers
3 tablespoons Butter, melted

Place a greased 9-inch spring form pan on top of a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (about 18-inches square). Securely wrap the foil around the pan. Set aside.

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small bowl, combine cracker crumbs and putter. Press crumb mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Place the pan on a baking sheet.

Bake for 8 minutes. Cool crust on a wire rack.

Crab Pesto Filling
3 packages (8 oz each) Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup sour Cream
¾ cup Asiago Cheese, shredded
3 tablespoons prepared Pesto
1 teaspoon grated Lemon Zest
½ teaspoon salt
2 large Eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup fresh Crabmeat
1 cup canned Artichoke Hearts, water-packed, chopped
Additional prepared Pesto for garnish
Small Basil leaves for garnish
Assorted Crackers for serving

Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.

In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat the cream cheese, sour cream, Asiago cheese, pesto, lemon zest and salt until smooth.

Add lightly beaten eggs, one egg at a time and beat on low speed until just combined. Remove bowl from standing mixer.

Pick through and flake crab meat. Set aside.

Drain artichoke hearts and pat dry. Chop, leaving in a paper towel to absorb the excess liquids.

Fold in crab meat and artichokes. Pour filling over cooled crust.

Place spring form pan in a large rimmed baking pan, add 1-inch of hot water to the baking pan to create a bath.

Bake in the 325-degree oven until the cent is just set and the top appears dull, about 55 minutes to 1 hour.

Remove baking pan from the oven. Carefully remove spring form pan for the water bath.

Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen. Continue to cool for another hour. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

To serve, remove the sides of the pan and place cheesecake on a round serving platter or plate large enough to hold cake.

Drizzle around the edge of the cheesecake with additional pesto; allowing some to drip down the sides. Garnish the top with a few bail leaves.

Serve with crackers.

Asparagus Swiss Quiche
1 refrigerated Pie Crust
10 strips Bacon, diced
1/2 White Onion, diced
1 lb fresh Asparagus, trimmed
1 cup shredded Swiss Cheese
1 tablespoon Flour
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper
3 large Eggs
1/2 cup Half-and-Half Cream

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Remove pie crust from packaging, follow directions to let crust soften.

Stack bacon, dice and set aside. Cut onion in half from root to tip. Reserve half an onion for another purpose. Peel and dice remaining half, set aside. Trim asparagus of woody ends. Cut eight asparagus spears into 4-inch-long spears for garnish. Cut remaining asparagus into 1-inch pieces, set aside. Shred cheese, set aside.

In a skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon to paper towels; drain, reserving 1 tablespoon drippings. In the drippings, sauté onion until browned; drain.

In a saucepan, cook all of the asparagus with a small amount of boiling water until crisp-tender; drain. Set cooked spears aside. Place small asparagus pieces into a mixing bowl.

Add the bacon, onion, cheese and flour to the mixing bowl with the asparagus pieces. Season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine, set aside.

In another bowl, beat eggs and cream; set aside.

Unroll crust into a 9-inch pie plate; flute edge.

Spread bacon-asparagus mixture over the crust. Pour egg mixture over filling. Top with asparagus spears.

Bake in the heated over for about 30 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean and crust is golden brown. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.

Whiskey Glazed Ham Steaks
1/2 cup Irish Whiskey
1 cup Barbecue Sauce
1 Garlic Clove
1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
1-1/2 teaspoons Brown Sugar
2 Ham Steaks

In a sauce pan over medium-low heat, whisk together whiskey and barbecue sauce. Peel garlic, grate into the whiskey mixture. Add mustard and brown sugar. Let simmer for 10 minutes.

Heat grill or a grill-pan. Spray lightly with cooking spray to prevent ham steaks from sticking. Grill steaks for about 2 or 3 minutes per side. Brush whiskey glaze over steaks. Continue to grill until glistening, turning and brushing with glaze as needed.

Transfer steaks to a cutting board. Cut steaks into quarters, arrange on a serving platter and serve hot.

Buttery Lemon-Kissed Irish Pancakes
1 cup Flour
1/2 teaspoon Salt
4 large Eggs
1-1/2 cups Milk
2 oz Butter, melted
1/4 teaspoon Lemon Juice
Butter for frying
1/4 cup Lemon Juice, about 2 lemons (for finishing)
1/2 cup Fine Sugar (for finishing)
Additional Melted Butter for serving
Powdered Sugar for Dusting

Sift flour and salt into a mixing bowl. Set aside.

In a small bowl, whip eggs until well blended. Pour eggs over the flour. Add milk and beat by hand for a minute or two, just to incorporate the ingredients.

Melt butter, allow to cool slightly and pour into the batter. Add 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice (more if a deeper lemon flavor is desired). Whisk once more.

Heat a 6 or 8-inch skillet over medium heat. Brush the inside of the pan with melted butter. (Butter will give the light pancakes a little extra flavor that you cannot get from oil or sprays).

Pour a little more than 1/4 cup of batter into the warmed pan. (I use 1/4 cup measuring cup and fill it about one and a half times to cover bottom o the pan with a thin layer of batter). Slightly tip and swirl pan to distribute batter evenly.

Cook the  pancake for about two minutes, swirling the pan a couple of times as the pancake cooks. The pancake is ready to flip when the upper side appears dry and doesn’t “giggle” when swirled. With a thin flexible spatula, carefully life pancake from the pan, flip and cook underside for another 30 seconds or so.

Turn pancake out onto a warm plate. Set skilled aside (off heat) between pancakes. Brush pancake on plate with a little lemon juice, sprinkle with a little fine sugar. Roll pancake with a cigar to form a long cylinder. Transfer to serving  platter and hold in a warm oven.

Repeat the cooking and rolling process until all the batter has been used.

Just before serving, brush pancakes with a little butter (you should have enough left over from the frying butter) and dust with powdered sugar.

Corned Beef Hash
4 Russet Potatoes
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons Bacon Drippings
Pepper to taste
1/2 White Onion
1 Can Corned Beef

Scrub potatoes, cut into chunks about an inch or so in size. Place cued potatoes into steamer basket the can be submerged in a pot of water. Place basket in a large pot. Fill with just enough water to cover potatoes. Season with a pinch of salt. Bring potatoes to a boil, cook about 8 minutes, until just tender. Drain well.

Meanwhile, slice onion in half from root to tip. Reserve half for another purpose. Peel remaining half, cut into thin slivers and set aside. Open canned corned beef and remove meat from the tin can. Break up meat into large chunks. Set aside.

Warm bacon drippings in a large skillet over medium heat. Place parboiled potatoes into the skillet, spread out in an even layer. Season potatoes with a little pepper and cook in bacon drippings undisturbed for about 6 minutes. Turn potatoes over, season with a little more pepper. Cook for another 4 minutes, just until browned.

Add onion slivers and crumbled corned beef. Stir to blend. Cover and continue to cook about 5 minutes, allowing the onions, meat and potatoes to “steam” warm. Remove lid. If everything is not beautifully browned, cook another few minutes to desired brownness.

Sheet Pan Fried Eggs
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
2 tablespoons Bacon Drippings
1 dozen Large Eggs
Salt to taste
Black Pepper to taste

Arrange a rack in the middle of oven, and place a rimmed baking sheet on middle rack. Heat oven to 425 degrees, heating the sheet pan as the oven warms.

Meanwhile, crack half of the eggs into a glass measuring cup. In another glass measuring cup, crack remaining eggs. Once sheet pan is preheated, remove from oven. Working quickly, drizzle olive oil onto hot sheet pan, add some bacon dripping, then tilt the pan to coat generously.

Pour eggs, 1 at a time, beside each other onto the sheet pan, taking care not to break the yolks.

Return sheet pan to oven, and bake until egg whites are set, while the yolks are still jiggly, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and serve immediately.

Toasted English Muffins
1 package English Muffins
Butter as desired

Toaster Method: Split English Muffins in half. Toast in a traditional toaster. Once toasted, slather split side with butter. Repeat until all the muffins are toasted.

Broiler Option: Split all the muffins in half. Spread butter over cut side. Arrange muffins on a rimmed baking sheet. Place under the broiler element of the oven, toast for about 2 or 3 minutes, until golden.

Once muffins are toasted, place split sides together again, wrap in foil and keep warm until ready to serve.

Author: Rosemarie's Kitchen

I'm a wife, mother, grandmother and avid home cook.I believe in eating healthy whenever possible, while still managing to indulge in life's pleasures.

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