St Paddy is for feasting: what’s your menu like this year?
Who would have ever thought that the death of a missionary would be celebrated year after year with music, dance, and merry-making all over the world? With over 50 countries planning to feast and booze on March 17, we gathered St Patrick was no ordinary missionary.
St Patrick Catholic Church, Ohio, Nheyob.
St Patrick or St Paddy’s day as we now call it, has become the most celebrated national day in the world. Whilst the Irish still regard it a sacred day, some of us just know it as a day to go all out in the kitchen making everything green and scrumptious. If you are not up to cooking up a feast, the ready-to-eat meals on the Aldi weekly ads will equally suffice, like the lamb leg roast for just $5.99 per lb.
How did we ever get to commemorate this day, you might ask? Here’s a brief history.
The Patron Saint of Ireland
Born into a wealthy family in Roman Britain around 385AD, St Patrick was kidnapped and taken into slavery in Ireland at the age of 16. Whilst in captivity, he became a devout Christian who later established monasteries, churches and schools, after his escape. Many legends grew around him too, like how he used the shamrock to explain the Trinity and how he drove out snakes from the whole of Ireland.
On March 17, 461AD, St Patrick died at a ripe old age of 122 years. He had worked to convert native-pagans to Christianity for over 30 years since he escaped from prison, then he retired to County Down in North-Eastern Ireland. The Catholic church, the Anglican Communion, the Eastern Orthodox church and the Lutheran church all look to March 17 to commemorate St Patrick for his work, and to celebrate the heritage and Irish culture in general.
St Paddy’s day goes global
Who then made this day about hosting parades, festivals, wearing green, and just boozing? the Irish diaspora of Northern America. The first parade was held in New York City in 1762. With the Irish immigrants population growing in America, the festivities became widespread. The day is now so commercialised that thanks to these diasporans, we can all be Irish for a day and partake of the merriness. From green beer and corned beef to shamrock muffins and spinach pancakes, we can all revel in the Irish culture for the day.
2021 is a special year though, with the pandemic that has kept us all indoors, most parades have been cancelled and we are more than likely to take shots on Zoom parties and dress up to celebrate in our own yards. Your neighbours are going to be on their front lawn too, so feel free to shout a toast and raise your glass to St Paddy whilst enjoying a barbeque or a mini picnic with these easy meals we have put together to help you have an awesome celebration.
Yes, the pancakes will be a bright green. The kids will enjoy their custardy texture and oniony bite.
This is the must-have meal of the day. The Irish in America relied on this dish because it was a cheap and nutritious way to feed their families.
These steaks have a melt-in-the-mouth texture and a flavour that is just unique.
Of course you will need lots of alcohol to wash down all these delicacies, that’s part of the tradition. Guinness extra stout, Irish red ale, Magners original Irish ciders, your favourite whiskey, just booze away.
Have a fantastic St Patrick’s day.