Family Festivities for St. Patrick’s Day
(Family Features) This St. Patrick’s Day, entertain your little leprechauns with delicious treats and fun activities that will lead them to their pot of gold.
Every year in March, families celebrate the annual Irish tradition of St. Patrick’s Day with a variety of celebrations. Whether it’s attending a parade or preparing and enjoying an elaborate Irish meal, everyone has their own favorite ways to celebrate the holiday. Set your own unique traditions and rituals with some ideas below.
Pass Along the Luck
Have kids put together lucky treat bags to pass along to neighbors. These treat bags could include cut-out, decorated and customized four-leaf clovers, chocolate coins and other goodies. Then, on St. Patrick’s Day, walk around as a family and surprise neighbors with these bags.
Set up a treasure hunt for family and friends by placing chocolate gold coins around the house. Give them a series of clues and riddles to help them figure out where to look for the coins. Equip each “hunter” with their own pot or basket for collecting the gold coins. At the end of the hunt, reward them for their hard work with some festive brownies. These delicious Chocolate Mint Brownies can be decorated with green gumdrops formed into shamrocks or other holiday candies. Use a shamrock-shaped cookie cutter to make these treats even more festive.
Chocolate Mint Brownies
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Start to Finish: 3 hours 25 minutes
Makes: 32 brownies
- 1 box Betty Crocker® Original Supreme brownie mix (with chocolate syrup pouch) water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on brownie mix box
- 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
- 1/4 cup whipping cream
- 1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 teaspoon mint extract
- 4 drops green food color
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- 1 bag (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips (2 cups)
- 1/2 cup butter (do not use margarine)
- Heat oven to 350°F. Grease only bottom of 13 x 9-inch pan with shortening or cooking spray. Make and bake brownie mix as directed on box for 13 x 9-inch pan, using water, oil and eggs. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
- In large bowl, beat filling ingredients with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Spread over cooled brownies. Refrigerate about 1 hour or until set.
- Meanwhile, in 2-quart nonstick saucepan, heat topping ingredients over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until melted and smooth. Cool about 10 minutes or until lukewarm.
- Pour topping over filling; spread to cover. Refrigerate uncovered about 2 hours or until set. Before cutting into bars, let stand 10 minutes at room temperature. For bars, cut into 8 rows by 4 rows. For easier cutting, cut brownies with a wet knife. Store covered in refrigerator.
For more delicious baking ideas, visit www.BettyCrocker.com.
Betty Crocker® is a registered trademark of General Mills.
Source: Betty Crocker
(Family Features) Turn your St. Patrick’s Day celebration into a chance to enjoy Irish heritage with hearty foods and a lively atmosphere. When it’s the one day each year it’s acceptable to pinch non-conforming friends and family, it’d be a shame not to go all out.
These few simple tips can help you put together the perfect party to revel in all things green – and tasty.
- Decorate with purpose. Everyone knows that green is the color of the day, but go one step further by incorporating it into different items. Banners and streamers work fine, but setting out green candles or even adorning your light fixtures with green bulbs can help you take an extra step forward.
- Create active fun. Instead of limiting your guests to dining and conversation, plan some simple activities to help the fun flow. Games like a “treasure hunt” for gold coins, limerick-writing competitions or even just turning up Irish-themed music can help get the party started.
- Eat festively. Turn your party’s food and drinks into true Irish dining with some delicious recipes like this American Irish Stew, which includes beef, onion, carrots and potatoes for a tasty cultural meal to fill all of your hungry guests.
For more hosting tips and the perfect themed recipes for any occasion, visit culinary.net.
American Irish Stew
Reprinted with permission from the American Institute for Cancer Research
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/4 pounds beef, top round, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
- 2 medium parsnips, cut into large chunks (optional)
- 3 cups low-fat, reduced-sodium beef broth
- 4 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 leek, coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- In large pot over medium-high heat, heat oil. Add beef and garlic. Cook, gently stirring until meat is evenly browned. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add onion, carrots and parsnips. Cook 3-4 minutes. Stir in broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer about 75 minutes, or until meat is tender.
- Stir in potatoes and simmer another 30 minutes. Add rosemary and leeks. Continue to simmer, uncovered, until potatoes are tender. To avoid potatoes falling apart, do not overcook.
- Serve hot and garnish with parsley, if desired.
Nutritional information per serving: 370 calories, 8 g total fat (2 g saturated fat), 43 g carbohydrate, 32 g protein, 6 g dietary fiber, 427 mg sodium.
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