#sol15 Day#16 Irish Comfort Food

I am the granddaughter of an Irish immigrant who arrived in the US through Ellis Island in the early 1900s. I grew up in a place where I was surrounded by people just like me, Irish Catholics. Some of the grandparents still held on to their Irish brogue and I struggled to understand them. Irish Soda Bread and corned beef and cabbage were eaten just because it is what we ate on Sunday. I know it wasn’t what the Irish from the homeland ate but it is what Irish Americans ate.

As an adult, I still have a soft spot for a boiled dinner and Irish Soda bread which, these days, I only make for St. Patrick’s Day. This morning, before I left for school, I tossed all of the ingredients into the crock pot with a deviation from my grandmother’s recipe… I added beer for the meat and vegetable to cook in all day.

When I arrived home after a long school day with conferences tagged onto the end, I couldn’t wait for dinner. My family had set the table so all I had to do was get the dinner on the table.

When I took the lid off the crock pot, it released a scent that took me back to the homes of any one of my neighbors on a Sunday afternoon. I scooped the meat and vegetables out of the crock pot and they were cooked to perfection. Potatoes just right, tender vegetables and meat coming apart.

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When my family and I sat down, I was able to relax and enjoy myself more than normal for a school night dinner. I enjoyed every bite. Of course, one advantage I have now is I can enjoy my dinner with a pint of stout. Which, of course, also adds to the relaxation and ability to unwind at the end of a long day.

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6 comments

  1. I love how this “slice” brings together your daily life and your heritage…, and how your memories of your heritage and background brought you comfort after a long day. Your writing is very open. Thanks for sharing a special part of your day and of who you are!

  2. Coming home to dinner ready is certainly an amazing way to relax. I like how added in some family heritage instead of just a simple dinner post. Yum!

  3. Yum! That’s what I’ll be having tomorrow night, minus the pint. More like 4oz for me! I always like to hear about traditional family food. It’s such an important part of our lives and evokes such strong memories.

  4. I’m not kidding-I literally just started the crockpot to let the same meal cook all night. I will wake up to the cooked dinner and reheat tomorrow night for supper! Happy st party’s day!

  5. Thank you for the background on your heritage. I’m from Italy, and the smells of certain foods are so comforting! I cooked an “Irish” meal yesterday for our Sunday family dinner. None of us are Irish, but my husband’s aunt, who passed away lin the fall at the age of 95, made an awesome corned beef and cabbage, so that dinner meant reconnecting to Aunt Connie for all of us. The power of food.

  6. That was so relaxing to read…i loved the way you began with your Irish roots, then your preparation, and then your utter delight at being able to simply be with your family and enjoy. A well deserved feast!

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