This St. Patrick’s Day, instead of shepherd’s pie and pint upon pint of Guinness, opt for a more elegant meal featuring modern Irish dishes that use fresh, seasonal produce.
We asked Wade Murphy, executive head chef at The Lodge at Doonbeg in County Clare — one of the best and most famous golf resorts in Ireland — what he was cooking this St. Patrick’s Day. First of all, he told us, St. Pat's is celebrated more in the U.S. and elsewhere around the world than in Ireland itself. Why? Because it's a way to honor peoples' Irish heritage "when they're not at home in Ireland."
So, what does an Irish chef who is at home in Ireland prepare to celebrate the holiday? Nothing too much out of the ordinary, according to Murphy. “I’m already using everything Irish,” he explains. At Doonbeg, Murphy chooses local, fresh, and seasonal — and thus Irish — products exclusively when preparing his modern international cuisine. His braised short ribs, a recently developed recipe featuring seasonal ingredients like prunes, celery root, and caramelized onions, will make its debut on the resort’s menu just before the holiday. He’s also serving up a modern interpretation of an Irish favorite, bacon and cabbage (bacon meaning cured pork loin in this case), with his slow-roasted pork belly. This can be served with cabbage and potatoes, he says; he just prefers something more fun and flavorful, like caramelized quince. (Photo courtesy of Flickr/wordridden)
And though you won’t exactly find any so-called “traditional” Irish dishes coming out of Murphy’s kitchen, he does offer one Irish-American creation classic that will never go out of style: a perfectly poured Irish coffee. (Photo courtesy of Flickr/jules:stonesoup)
A Modern Irish Dinner Menu: