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Get St. Patrick's Day Ready: How To Host A St. Pat’s party
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Get St. Patrick's Day Ready: How To Host A St. Pat’s party

St. Patrick’s Day… a time for the world to come together, wear peculiar leprechaun outfits and colour our food with gallons of green food colouring. But if spending the day crammed in your local Irish pub (or queuing up to get into one) is not your thing this year, why not host a party yourself?

Here’s everything you need to be sure (to be sure) your guests get into the Irish spirit.

This year, we’re putting down the shamrocks and learning to appreciate the finer side of Irish culture by getting acquainted with Irish cuisine, with drinks to match.

As a casual starter, whip up a batch of boxties. Boxty is a traditional Irish potato pancake which can be served a number of ways. We recommend serving boxties with crème fraiche and smoked trout. Then to drink with that, while throwing together a sickly sweet, luminous green concoction might seem like a great idea, we’re inviting you to try something a little different.

It’s called a Whiskey Spritz and it’s as tasty as it gets.

Here are the ingredients:
• 30mL Jameson Irish Whiskey
• 60mL dry ginger ale
• 90mL sparkling apple juice
• 1 lemon wedge
• Ice

Here’s how you make it:
1. Fill a tall glass with ice and pour in the Irish whiskey.
2. Add your dry ginger ale, then gently squeeze a wedge of lemon.
3. Top with sparkling apple juice and stir to your liking.

Then on to the main! The great thing is you can prepare either of these meals well ahead of the guests arriving.

Corned beef and cabbage is a classic Irish dish, simply slow cook your corned beef and char-grill or fry up your cabbage when you’re ready to serve. If the weather has cooled down a bit you could try a hearty Irish stew instead, which has plenty of veg in the sauce as well.

On St Patrick’s Day you can never have too much potato or cabbage. If you have a large group to feed you’d best make up some colcannon, which is mashed potato with cabbage or kale. It goes without saying that a Guinness or Kilkenny would pair perfectly with these meals!

Now to dessert. If your guests haven’t had a Guinness yet, why not experiment with it as an actual ingredient? A chocolate and Guinness cake is guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser. The perfect pairing for this cake is a drink that’s been warming the hearts of millions of people worldwide for more than 70 years – Irish coffee. Australians make better coffee than anyone else on the planet (at least, that’s what we like to believe).

While most of the world celebrates St. Patrick’s Day in the heart of spring, here in Australia, we mark it in the thick of autumn. So, what better way to honour the occasion than with a shot of coffee, a splash of Tullamore D.E.W. and a dollop of whipped cream on top?

Here are the ingredients:
• 1 teaspoon or cube of sugar
• 180mL hot black coffee
• 30mL Tullamore D.E.W. Irish Whiskey
• Fresh whipped cream

Here’s how you make it:
1. Place sugar in a coffee glass or mug and pour in the hot coffee, stir to dissolve the sugar.
2. Add the shot of whiskey.
3. Gently layer the whipped cream on top of the coffee.

Don’t love Guinness? Instead of the cake, try a liqueur -based dessert – some Bailey’s truffles would also go down a treat!

Here are the ingredients:
• 220g good-quality dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
• 220g good-quality milk chocolate, coarsely chopped
• 80ml (1/3 cup) thickened cream
• 2 tablespoons Baileys Original Irish Cream liqueur
• 100g chocolate sprinkles

Here’s how you make it:
1. Place the chopped chocolates and cream in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan half-filled with simmering water (make sure the bowl doesn't touch the water). Stir with a metal spoon until chocolate melts and the mixture is smooth. Stir in the Baileys. Place in the fridge for 4 hours to chill.
2. Line a tray with non-stick baking paper. Roll 2 teaspoonfuls of chocolate mixture into a ball, then roll in chocolate sprinkles to coat. Place on the prepared tray. Repeat with remaining chocolate mixture. Place in the fridge for 1 hour or until firm.

There you have it, track down The Cranberries, The Corrs and U2 on Spotify and you’re all set. Sláinte!