Tag Archives: St. Patrick’s Day

Irish Nachos

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irish nachos titlesI have to thank my friend, Meghan, for giving me the idea for this post. She is highly qualified to make these being both Irish (on her dad’s side) and Mexican (on her mom’s side).  There are enough recipes out there for the traditional Irish foods like corned beef and cabbage, or sausage and boxty (I did those last year). And since we are a No Artificial Colors blog having something faux-green is right out. I was captivated by this fun, light-hearted take on St. Patrick’s Day food since it uses lots of real food in a delicious, fun, family-friendly way.

The idea is simple yet brilliant. Make a big pan of oven-fries (the inspiration for my fries comes from Lidia’s Italy) and then top your fries with traditional nacho ingredients. To keep the Irish theme be sure to use plenty of Kerrygold butter and cheese. (We love Kerrygold, not because it’s Irish but because they pride themselves on using milk from grassfed cows.)  Be sure to use plenty of fresh cilantro and/or parsley on top because it is both green (can you wear cilantro instead of a shamrock if you don’t want to get pinched?) and it’s also really good for you. irish nachos potatoes title

Irish Nachos

for the potatoes

6 good sized organic Russet potatoes

3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

3 Tablespoons Kerrygold Irish butter

1 teaspoon sea salt or herbed season salt such as Rosemary Celtic Sea Salt

preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Scrub the potatoes and slice them into thin wedges, at least 8-10 per potato, maybe more depending on how big your potatoes are. Thinner wedges get crispier. Thicker wedges are more like steak fries. Melt together the butter and olive oil. Toss the potatoes with butter mixture and sprinkle on the salt or seasoned salt and toss well. Place the wedges skin-side down in a large cast iron skillet or stoneware baking sheet or on a parchment-lined baking sheet. It may take more than one pan to fit them all in. Cast iron or stoneware help the potatoes brown better. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, turning the potatoes over once or twice to help them cook. If you’re using two pans be sure to rotate pans during the cooking. While the potatoes are cooking assemble the rest of the ingredients for the topping so you will be ready as soon as the potatoes are done.

for the toppings

1 lb. grassfed ground beef (or make the Irish sausage recipe and use that to top your nachos)

2 Tablespoons taco seasoning (no-MSG! use my recipe to make your own)

8-10 ounces Kerrygold cheese, shredded

3 green onions, thinly sliced

salsa (make your own probiotic salsa here)

sour cream (read the label, nothing but cream and cultures should be in it, we like Daisy)

chopped fresh cilantro or parsley

Brown the ground beef. Sprinkle in the taco seasoning and mix well. Assemble the remaining ingredients. Feel free to add any other nacho toppings you want like black olives, jalapenos, or bacon. Mmmmmm, bacon….

for the nachos

When the potatoes are done pull them out of the oven and turn on the broiler. While the broiler is heating up, spread the seasoned ground beef evenly over the potatoes. Evenly spread the shredded cheese over the ground beef. Slip the potatoes, beef and cheese back into the oven and broil for 2 minutes or until the cheese is melty. Remove from the oven and top with the remaining toppings. Serve at once.

Irish Nachos
 
Author:
Cuisine: Irish and Mexican
 
A fun spin on nachos to make your St. Patrick's Day, or any day, more festive!
Ingredients
  • 6 good sized organic russet potatoes
  • 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Kerrygold Irish butter
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt or herbed season salt like Rosemary Celtic Sea Salt
  • 1 lb. grassfed ground beef
  • 2 Tablespoons taco seasoning (no-MSG)
  • 8-10 ounces Kerrygold cheese, shredded
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • salsa
  • sour cream
  • chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
  • other nacho toppings as desired
Instructions
  1. To make the potatoes preheat the oven to 475 degrees.
  2. Scrub the potatoes and slice them into thin wedges, at least 8-10 per potato, thinner wedges make crispier fries.
  3. Melt together the butter and olive oil and toss with the potatoes along with the salt.
  4. Place the potatoes skin-side down in a large cast iron or stoneware baking pan, or a parchment-lined baking sheet using more than one pan if needed to fit the potatoes in a single layer.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes turning once or twice to help brown evenly.
  6. While potatoes are cooking assemble the remaining ingredients for the toppings.
  7. Brown the ground beef and season with taco seasoning and/or more salt if needed.
  8. When the potatoes are done pull them out of the oven and preheat the broiler.
  9. While broiler is heating top the potatoes with the ground beef and the shredded cheese.
  10. Return potatoes to the oven and broil 2 minutes or until cheese melts.
  11. Remove from the oven and top with remaining nacho toppings and serve at once.

 Tell us how you like to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at your house. Leaves us a comment here and don’t forget to pin this recipe to use again – there’s no rule saying you can’t have these anytime!

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Irish Potato Pancakes (Boxty)

I was looking for a good Irish potato joke to start off this blog, but didn’t find one so this will have to do:  What’s Irish and stays out all night?  Paddy O’Furniture!  :)

Just about everyone loves potatoes somehow, whether mashed, french fried, baked, stuffed or made into chips.  These potato pancakes combine some of the best ways to cook potatoes into one delicious dish.  Part of the potatoes are boiled then mashed, part are shredded raw, and then the whole thing is stirred into a thick batter and fried into golden brown, crispy cakes. They’re great served up with a plate of Irish Sausage, or you could even eat them for breakfast along with a fried egg or two.

Irish boxty potato pancakes

Be sure to buy organic potatoes for this recipe. Potatoes are always on the EWG’s Dirty Dozen list of most heavily sprayed vegetables and fruits. Choose a flavorful fat to fry these in. I like butter or bacon fat, but you can also use coconut oil or ghee. Remember, healthy saturated fats like these can withstand high heat without going rancid.

Irish Potato Pancakes (Boxty)
 
Author:
Recipe type: side dish
Cuisine: Irish
 
Crispy golden brown potato pancakes.
Ingredients
  • 1½ pounds of Russet or Irish potatoes
  • ⅓ cup of arrowroot powder, or buckwheat flour, or all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup of milk or cream
  • ¼ cup of diced onion
  • butter or bacon grease for the pan
Instructions
  1. Cook ¾lb. of the potatoes either by baking them for 1 hour at 350 degrees or by cutting them into fourths and boiling them in salted water until they are tender. If you boil them be sure to remove them from the water and let them dry out, you don't want soggy potatoes.
  2. Allow the cooked potatoes to cool, then mash them with a fork or potato masher.
  3. Meanwhile in a large bowl mix together arrowroot, salt, and baking powder, and whisk in the milk.
  4. Use a food processor with the shredding blade to shred the remaining ¾ lb of raw potatoes (or shred with a hand grater), placing the shredded potato onto paper towels or a tea towel to get rid of any excess moisture.
  5. Mix the mashed potato, shredded potato and diced onion into the milk mixture and stir to combine well.
  6. Heat a large cast iron griddle over medium heat and add butter or bacon grease.
  7. When the griddle is hot and butter is melted scoop up about ¼ cup of the potato mixture and press it onto the skillet, spreading it into a circle.
  8. Cook about 2-3 minutes on each side or until it is nicely golden brown, then remove to a warm platter and continue with remaining potato mixture.
  9. Makes about a dozen Boxty.

Irish boxty and sausages

Irish Sausages

Pork sausages have been a part of traditional Irish fare for thousands of years, first with the wild boar that roamed the British Isles and then later the domesticated pig kept in herds on the noblemen’s land. Ireland’s well-known butter and cheese are another reason for keeping pigs – the leftovers from making these dairy products, whey and buttermilk, are perfect for feeding to pigs so that nothing was wasted.  Even so, pork was traditionally never eaten fresh very often. Cured bacon and ham was more common as was mixing the ground pork with salt and seasonings to make sausages. Not only do these traditional methods of preparing pork give it an added depth of flavor, they also make the pork healthier to eat.

middle ages boar hunting pictureMost store bought sausages today are made from CAFO pork and are filled with artificial flavorings, chemical preservatives and MSG.  Making your own sausage is easy and allows you to control exactly what goes in and what doesn’t. These Irish sausages are free-form patties, but if you have a sausage stuffer feel free to make your own links with this recipe. You need to make the sausage at least a day ahead for the flavors to deepen and for the meat to “cure” a bit from the salt.

Irish Sausages
 
Author:
Recipe type: sausage
Cuisine: Irish
 
Homemade pork sausage patties with savory herb and garlic seasoning.
Ingredients
  • 1½ lbs ground pork (preferably pasture-raised)
  • 1 tsp dried thyme leaves
  • ½ tsp dried marjoram
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • ¼ tsp dried fennel seeds
  • 1 to 1½ tsp coarse sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 egg (preferably from pasture raised hens)
Instructions
  1. Place the ground pork in a large bowl.
  2. Place the dried herbs, sea salt and pepper in a spice mill and grind them into a powder, then add them to the pork.
  3. Mince the garlic or use a garlic press and add it to the pork along with the vinegar.
  4. Use your hands to mix the herbs and garlic into the pork until very well combined.
  5. Cover and refrigerate at least 24 hours or up to 3 days.
  6. When you are ready to cook the sausages remove the pork mixture from the refrigerator and add the egg, mixing well with your hands.
  7. Shape the pork into patties about 3oz. each and pan fry in a hot skillet with a little butter or lard to keep them from sticking.
  8. Cook about 4-5 minutes per side until the juices run clear and the meat is no longer pink in the middle.

Irish sausages and boxty