St. Paddy’s Day is the one night of the year that you are allowed to really let loose, especially if you live in a big city. But what if, well, you just want to do something a little different this year? Like, stay in with a few good friends and, well, cook? Or perhaps, just maybe, you're working on that beach body for that little vacay in Cabo, and you just don’t want to blow it right now?
Be bold, then! Skip the Pub Crawl this year, and check out what Joonbug has found for you to have a lighter, healthier, but just as jammin’ St. Patrick’s Day:
First off, if you really are going to have a few like-minded friends over, you are going to want to make some delicious, natural drinks for your guests! (It IS still St. Patrick’s Day, after all!)
Why not try these delicious (and non-alcoholic!) drink-alternatives from the Examiner.com:
Lucky Leprechaun Mint Chocolate Shake:
In a blender, combine the following ingredients:
4 scoops mint chocolate chip ice cream
¼ cup milk
1 drop peppermint extract
Pour into glasses. Garnish with whipped cream and a sprig of mint. Serve. Yum!
In a blender, combine the following ingredients:
1.5 cups orange juice
4 scoops lime sherbet
2 ripe bananas, peeled and chunked
6 Tbs chopped mint (optional)
4 kiwifruits, peeled and halved
2 cups crushed ice.
Pour into glasses. Serve.
St. Patrick’s Day Party Punch:
4 liters lemon-lime carbonated soda
2 pints lime sherbet
6 cups crushed ice
Add all ingredients to punch bowl. Serve.
Craving the yummy corned beef hash dish but don't want it to stick to your waistline? Try this healthier dish instead from EatingWell.com:
A Healthy Corned Beef Hash
- 2 teaspoons canola oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 4 cups diced cooked potatoes, or frozen hash-brown potatoes
- 1 cup chopped lean corned beef brisket, (4 ounces, see Tip)
- 1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- Salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 large eggs
In a large cast-iron skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until it starts to brown- 5 to 8 minutes. Add potatoes and cook, stirring, until they brown in spots and look crispy, about 8 minutes more. Stir in corned beef and broth and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until liquid is absorbed, 5 to 8 minutes. Add parsley and season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, fill a large skillet with 2 inches salted water and bring to a gentle simmer. Break eggs, one at a time, onto a saucer and slide into the simmering water. Poach eggs until set to desired firmness, 4 to 5 minutes.
Divide hash among 4 plates. Place eggs on top of hash.
- Tip: Corned beef can be purchased at your supermarket deli. Be sure to specify lean: it has 1 gram fat per ounce and an ounce of regular corned beef has 5 grams fat.
If you’re craving veggie fare, but still want to keep the St. Paddy’s Day tradition alive, try this wonderful Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie: (Source: associatedcontent.com)
Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie
For the topping:
2 lbs. peeled and cubed potatoes
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tbsp. butter or butter substitute
1/2 cup cream or soy milk
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
For the filling:
1 package "beef" vegetarian meat substitute - ground soy protein crumbles
4 tbsp. olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
8 oz. mushrooms, sliced
2 tbsp. tomato paste
1/2 cup soy milk or other similar
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 sprig of thyme, stems discarded
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. flour blended into 1 cup of vegetable stock
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and oil a 1.5 quart baking dish. Bring the potatoes to a boil in a large pot of water, then reduce the heat to a simmer for 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes and return to the pot. Add the garlic, butter, cream or milk and salt and pepper. Mash or beat with an electric mixer until the potatoes are smooth. Set aside.
Heat the vegetarian meat substitute in the olive oil along with the onion, carrot, celery, and mushrooms. Stir and continue heating until and the vegetarian meat substitute and vegetables are softened. Add the thyme leaves, salt and pepper, then slowly mix in the tomato paste. Cook for 5 - 7 minutes.
Add the milk and Worcestershire sauce Slowly pour the flour and stock mixture into the pan and stir until it begins to thicken.
Spoon the vegetarian meat substitute mixture into the dish and top with the potatoes. Be sure to leave an open space around the edge of the topping and place the dish onto a cookie sheet before baking to help prevent spills. Bake approximately 30 minutes or until the potatoes have browned, then let it rest out of the oven for another 15 minutes.
If you want to feel full, hearty, but still keep the Irish flavor alive, try making this outstanding Beef Tenderloin Dish with Horseradish Sauce from the South Beach Diet! Watch your carbs while savoring a full, delectable and still traditional Irish meal:
Make-Ahead: Sauce can be made 1 day in advance and refrigerated in a covered container until ready to use. If separation occurs, whisk before serving.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 35 minutes
Resting time: 15 minutes
Makes 8 (6-ounce) servings and 1 cup sauce
For the tenderloin:
1 (4-pound) whole beef tenderloin, tied
2 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
For the sauce:
1 (8-ounce) container reduced-fat sour cream
2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
1 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Heat oven to 450ºF.
For tenderloin: Place meat in a large baking pan. Combine pepper, rosemary, and salt in a small bowl. Rub meat all over with oil, then rub in seasonings.
Roast until meat thermometer measures 125ºF for medium-rare, 30 to 35 minutes. For the sauce: While meat is cooking, whisk together sour cream, horseradish, vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Serve at room temperature with tenderloin.
Allow meat to rest for 15 minutes before slicing into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Serve warm with horseradish sauce!
And please, we here at Joonbug.com want to make sure that you really don’t forget to enjoy yourself this St. Patrick’s Day, whatever your plans may be. If you do get forced to go out to your local pub crawl, just remember this: It takes the body one FULL HOUR to metabolize each and every drink you have, so please, be very careful, drink responsibly, and make sure to snack a little as you go.
May you truly have the luck of the Irish this St. Paddy’s Day!