Saint Patrick’s Day is March 17th
At the end of the post I have included my recipe for
Crock Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage
and a link to website Foxeslovelemons.com for a recipe for Mini Shepherd’s Pie; just in case you want a change from Corned Beef and Cabbage.
Well it’s time for the wearing of the green. On Saint Patrick’s Day everyone is a little Irish.
When Saint Patrick’s Day comes around each year, I immediately think of the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade on 5th Ave in Manhattan, corned beef and cabbage, shamrocks, Irish soda bread, bagpipes and green bagels for breakfast.
(click on photos to enlarge)
I chose to include another symbol of Saint Patrick’s Day at my table and that is the Leprechaun. A leprechaun is an Irish fairy who looks like a small, old man 2 feet tall. Legend has it that they are unfriendly BUT they also have a hidden pot of gold!
Of course this tablescape had to center around the color green, so here we go. The tablecloth is green lace with a shamrock pattern which I placed over a simple white tablecloth. I found the cutest placemats in Homegoods when I went in looking for a pastel blue tablecloth (didn’t find the blue tablecloth by the way) but fell in love with these placemats. I didn’t even think of using them for Saint Patrick’s Day until I took my green dishes out and noticed the colors in the placemat border matched the color of the dishes. I originally thought to use these placemats with my “watermelon” dessert dishes for the summer. (We’ll get to those on another post).
I used a white charger plate followed by a green dinner plate and then a darker green salad plate. See how the dishes picked up all the shades of green in the placemat border? Kelly green is usually the Saint Patrick’s Day green but with all my dishes, that is the color that I don’t own. (I have to work on that).
To brighten up the table a bit (and not have a green overload), I added white napkins instead of green with dark green napkin rings. Just for a little fun, I placed a few felt shamrocks that I bought in Party City on each salad plate; along with a mini glass shamrock for “good luck”. The table looked a little bare so I added some Saint Patrick’s Day confetti of shamrocks and gold nuggets scattered on the table.
Topped each place setting off with an individual pot of gold (this time only gold chocolate coins) for each guest and added my shamrock glasses. I love these glasses. They were a great find for me many years ago in Marshalls; because you don’t often see glassware for this holiday that aren’t acrylic. These are a little larger than I would have liked and very thick glass, but they work. I used a green glitter shamrock as a coaster so the glasses would be highlighted against the tablecloth.
Now on to the centerpiece. I had to display my leprechaun surrounded by his pot of gold. I used a plastic Kelly green cauldron for my base. I didn’t want to fill the entire cauldron with coins (that would take me forever); so I stuffed newspaper 3/4 of the way in the cauldron and then added a little more green with vase filler in various shades of green and gold. A few gold coins here and there and we are done with the centerpiece.
I needed a little bit more pizzazz for the table, so I took two glittery garland shamrocks that came on stands from my Saint Patrick’s Day decorations in the front window. I normally display these shamrocks with other Saint Patrick’s Day decorations; but this time I added them to the tablescape. I placed them on each side of the centerpiece and it makes the table complete. (Remember, shop your house first for tablescape decorations).
And what is a Saint Patrick’s Day table without Irish Soda Bread, so I went out to buy that too. (Purchased this one in an Italian bakery so I’ll let you know if it has that old fashioned traditional Irish Soda Bread taste).
Table Setting Details
White tablecloth and napkins – from Linens and Things
Green napkin rings – from Bed, Bath and Beyond
Green lace shamrock tablecloth – from Amazon
Placemats – from Homegoods – NEW purchase!
White charger plate – from Pfaltzgraff
Green Dinner Plate – from Amazon (by Gibson- pattern: Green Aruba)
Dark Green Salad Plate – Had them too long to remember the pattern or where I purchased them
Mini black cauldrons, chocolate coins, felt shamrocks – from Party City
Glass table confetti – from Pier I
Vase filler – from Pier I
Leprechaun – from Oriental Trading – a few years ago
Shamrock Glasses – from Marshalls
Glittered shamrocks on stands – from Michael’s Arts and Crafts
Flatware – my every day silver and gold set
Irish Soda Bread – from Alpine Bakery, Smithtown NY
As I mentioned in my Chinese New Year post, I am fascinated by other cultures and customs and every year when I make the traditional corned beef and cabbage and eat Irish soda bread, I often wondered, why these foods for this holiday? So I did some research and this is what I found out, just in case you were curious too.
Corned Beef and Cabbage
photo credit- hecooksshewines.com
Corned Beef and cabbage isn’t actually the national dish of Ireland. You wouldn’t eat it on Saint Patrick’s Day in Dublin. During the time of the Irish immigration to the U.S., the first generation of Irish- Americans were in search of the comforting tastes of their homeland. On Saint Patrick’s Day that meant boiled bacon. But the immigrants were too poor to afford the high price of pork and bacon products. Instead, they turned to the cheapest cut of meat available: beef brisket. The corned beef was paired with cabbage, as it was one of the cheapest vegetables available to the Irish immigrants.
Irish Soda Bread
photo credit- recipegirl.com
I couldn’t find an exact answer as to why Irish Soda Bread is served on Saint Patrick’s Day, but Irish Soda Bread is a traditional product of Ireland and therefore brought over with the immigrants.
And that is my tablescape for Saint Patrick’s Day. It was a pleasure sharing my ideas with you. I hope this post gave you some new ideas for your Saint Patrick’s Day table.
“May the leprechauns be near you,
To spread luck along your way.
And may all the Irish angels,
Smile upon you St. Patrick’s Day.”
Until my next post, stay well and make every day a celebration!
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My dear friend Nancy Lucas and I had very similar recipes for crock pot Corned Beef and Cabbage, so the following recipe is a combination of the two…
Slow Cooker Corned Beef and Cabbage
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 8 1/2 hours
Optional cooking time: 2 hours LOW – then 2 hrs HIGH – then 1 hr LOW)
6 red potatoes or fingerling potatoes, halved
4 carrots, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1 medium onion, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1 (4 to 5-pound) corned beef, rinsed
3 large bay leaves
1 tsp ground thyme (or 1 sprig of fresh thyme)
1 teaspoon black pepper corns
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard or dark mustard with horseradish
8 ounces beer (any unflavored kind will do; you can substitute water here, as well)
2 cups low sodium chicken stock or water
1 medium head of cabbage, cut into 2-inch wedges
- Place potatoes, carrots, and onion in the bottom of a large slow cooker pot.
- Rinse the corned beef and lay it over the vegetables. Add in bay leaves, pepper corns, and Dijon mustard.
- Pour beer and stock over everything. Make sure liquid covers most of the corned beef; if not, add more water or stock. Cover and cook on low setting for 8 hours.
- Add the cabbage to the slow cooker and cook until cabbage is just tender (about 30 minutes).
- Remove the meat to a cutting board, cover with foil and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing.
- Slice on the diagonal against the grain
- Serve with the veggies and extra mustard
Mini Shepherd’s Pie
This recipe is brought to you by Foxeslovelemons.com website.
Due to copyright laws, I cannot post the recipe on my blog.
Click on the link above to visit that website for the recipe.