Celebrating St. Paddy’s day the right way

Ring in the Irish holiday with green beer and Guinness beef stew.

La fheile Padraig sona daoibh!

St. Patrick’s Day usually includes silly costumes, shamrock headbands, leprechaun hats, and gaudy green necklaces – all a nod to the Irish, known for their beer and having a good time.

But do you know the history behind the holiday?

St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, was born in Britain, jailed and taken to Ireland as a slave.

He escaped at the age of 20 and grew up to become a bishop, preaching across Ireland for 40 years.

St. Patrick used the iconic shamrock associated with Ireland as a way to illustrate the Holy Trinity – the concept of one God in three persons: the Father, his Son, and the Holy Spirit.

He died on March 17, AD 461 – a day that has been celebrated in his honour for centuries.

And while we all squeeze a bit of green food colouring into our beer, Black Press columnist Chef Dez suggests sneaking a little beer into a beef stew.

“It is fairly easy to prepare, has great complex flavour, and it definitely will help to make the dinner table a celebratory venue in recognition of St. Patrick’s Day,” he writes.

Guinness beef stew:

• 4 tbsp canola oil;• 1 kg cubed beef stewing meat;• salt and pepper;• 4 medium carrots, sliced into 1/2 inch coins;• 2 celery stalks, sliced;• 1 medium onion, diced small;• 6 garlic cloves, chopped small;• 2 stalks fresh rosemary, chopped;• 3 bay leaves;• 1 – 440ml can of Guinness beer;• 1 cup full bodied red wine;• 1 cup beef broth;• 2 tbsp dark brown sugar;• 2 large red-skinned potatoes, diced large;• salt and pepper to taste;• 2 tbsp cornstarch; with a few tbsp red wine, optional

1. Heat a heavy bottomed large pot over medium high heat.

2. Toss the stew meat with 1 tablespoon of the oil and salt and pepper.

3. Add the other 3 tablespoons of oil to the heated pot. Brown the stew pieces in the hot oil – making sure not to overcrowd the pot. As the pieces are browned, remove and set aside.

4. Lower the heat to medium and add the carrot, celery, onion, garlic, rosemary and more salt and pepper. Cook for approximately two minutes until the vegetables have softened a bit.

5. Add the bay leaves, Guinness, wine, broth, brown sugar, potatoes, and the reserved browned stew meat. Bring to a boil and then cover, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1.5 to two hours until the meat is tender.

Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

6. Optional – if you want a thicker broth – mix the cornstarch with the few tablespoons of wine and stir it into the finished stew. Bring to a boil to thicken and then serve.Makes six to eight portions.

Just Posted

Painful Truth: The best bad ideas for next year’s columns

To provoke discussion, you have to first provoke.

Langley realtor uses Monopoly tournament to add to refugee group’s community chest

A fundraising tournament could be the start of an annual tradition.

Hankering for a piece of Star Wars?

A massive Star Wars memorabilia collection is going on the auction block in Langley.

Supreme Court of Canada rules in human-rights case involving Langley firm

The case involved two people working for separate contractors on a Delta road project.

Langley Rotarians work for clinics in Kenya

Local Rotary Clubs are asking locals to think of others at Christmastime.

VIDEO: Recovering addict shares art and story to motivate others

A Langley City man spends time each day painting in McBurney Plaza.

Accused B.C. drug smuggler to be extradited

Supreme Court of Canada upholds extradition order for accused Shuswap drug smuggler, Colin Martin

One convicted, two cleared in 2014 deaths of men in B.C.’s Cariboo

Andrew Jongbloets convicted of manslaughter in deaths of Matthew Hennigar, 23 and Kalvin Andy, 22

VIDEO: Pedestrian struck by vehicle caught on security camera

Incident points to danger on the roads not only in low light but also in bright sunshine

Firefighter dies, thousands more take on California blaze

This is second death linked to the Thomas fire, northwest of Los Angeles

Moose calves rescued in northern B.C. are ‘golden nuggets:’ researcher

Calves discovered near Prince George in late May. Mother had been killed by a car

Missing Alberta man could be headed to Victoria

Police in Alberta say Vernon “Allan” Pickard has not been heard from since late November

Cineplex charges extra at some Star Wars screenings

Fans are getting a surprise twist at the box office with extra $1 charges for assigned seating

Toddler sent to hospital following dog bite at Vancouver Island daycare

Malamute/husky cross involved in incident at 1200-block of Burnside Rd. West

Most Read