Tuesday, March 15, 2011

St. Patrick's Day: Corned and Green

My name is Erin, which actually doesn't make me as Irish as most people think.  I also have an lovely amount of freckles and a red headed daughter, though, so I'm earning my green.  For as long as I can remember though, I've always love St. Patrick's Day.  When I ate meat, I loved corned beef, I love potatoes and cabbage and carrots.  I like a good sweet and spicy mustard as a side.  I like playful green food and a holiday that doesn't require anyone to buy a present for anyone else, but you get to dress up.

I like this holiday.

Last year, I made my first seitan corned beef using this recipe.  I liked it a lot, but what I forgot until this year was that it goes a little heavy on the fennel and caraway.  Anyway, for this year, I decided to try to make my soy curls taste like corned beef, and I just used the same seitan recipe.  I mixed all the seasonings, dry and wet, with 4 cups of water and 2 cubes of "not beef" bullion.  I blended it all well and poured it over about 1lbs soy curls.  I let them soak for a good half hour before baking them at 350 for about 20 minutes in a covered pan.  I uncovered them and baked then about 10-15 minutes more turning them a few times.  

Meanwhile, I boiled potatoes in more "Not Beef" stock and sauteed some kale with garlic and olive oil. I blended the cooked kale with some of the stock so that it became a bright green sauce that I mixed in with the potatoes when I mashed them.  These are the greenest mashed potatoes I've ever made.
My toddler danced in circles and begged for more of the green puree.  What a funny girl.

My final additions to dinner were to quarter a cabbage and chop some carrots to cook in the potato water.  A friend made a spicy slaw and another batch of mashed potatoes and kale, not knowing I was bringing cabbage and potatoes.  She also made a delicious soda bread that was the perfect sweet addition to the meal.

I'm glad we celebrated early because I'm hoping someone else will be able to make the greenest mashed potatoes ever or a great vegan corned beef.

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