Everyone knows that St. Patrick’s Day is a day to celebrate. My only request is please don’t drink green beer. Yuk! Wear green, eat green vegetables, have a green candle, but don’t ruin the beer with green food colouring!
And it shouldn’t be just any beer. For St. Patrick’s Day, have a Guinness stout i.e. the real Guinness Irish dry stout that originated in the brewery of Arthur Guinness at St. James’s Gate, Dublin, Ireland, in 1759.
Drink it to accompany a traditional Irish meal such as corned beef (made with Guinness) and cabbage, or fish and chips. Such a wonderful memory – on my first trip to Dublin, I immediately went to a restaurant and had fish and chips with a glass of Guinness at almost lunchtime. It was heaven! And of course, the Guinness does taste better in Ireland than anywhere else in the world.
Actually, the brewery started in Dublin in 1759, when Arthur Guinness signed a 9000-year lease on a dilapidated brewery at St. James Gate in London. But it was in 1799 that he ceased making ale and began making the darker “porter”, so named because it was popular with night porters in English from where it came.
In 1821, they recorded the precise instructions for brewing Guinness Superior Porter, the beginnings of today’s Guinness Original and Guinness Extra Stout. This is a recipe you can’t make at home but you can enjoy it at home, thanks to their later innovations i.e. the widget.
And here’s the first recipe with history that you can try at home: the Black Velvet which is beer added to rum, created in London to reflect that dark mood after the death of Prince Albert in 1861.
Over the next 150 years, Guinness was adventurous and creative in exporting by sea, opening breweries in Nigeria and Malaysia, employing scientists to create the perfect beer and launching innovative, creative advertising campaigns. My favourite campaign was in 1959, for their 200th anniversary. They dropped “150,000 embossed bottles into the Atlantic Ocean from 38 different ships over a period of six weeks. The bottles contain some unusual documents, namely a colourful certificate from “the Office of King Neptune’, a booklet recounting the story of Guinness, a special gold-coloured Guinness Stout label and even instruction on how to turn the bottle into a table lamp.”
And of course, there is the award-winning widget which lets us drink creamy and smooth Guinness Draught from a can or bottle.
For the second recipe, Guinness has kindly provided, through their pairings page, the pairing of the Guinness Draught with Apple Wood Bacon Sandwich:
Slice roll lengthwise and toast briefly in a hot oven. Spread mustard on the top side and spread Branston pickle on the bottom side of the bread. Next, top the sandwich with brie cheese, bacon, grilled red onion and gem lettuce. Enjoy.
Goes perfectly with Guinness® Draught
And it is the Guinness Draught used in the third recipe: Corned Beef made with Guinness.
Corned beef is a carryover from the days when food was pickled or cured for preservation because of no refrigeration. “Corned” refers to the large salt crystals used in this preservation.
I present this recipe from Food.com as it is the closest to the one that I made but don’t have at hand right now. I actually had marinated the beef brisket to make my own corned beef, but that took at least 3-4 days. This recipe is something you can make today.
Don’t forget to have it with a Guinness. And if you go to Dublin, go and visit the Guinness Museum and factory. It finished with a glass of Guinness on their rooftop, overlooking Dublin.
Recipe: Corned Beef and Cabbage with Guinness Draught
4 lbs flat cut corned beef brisket
1 (12 ounce) bottle Guinness draught (make sure you use Guinness draught, not stout as it will turn it bitter!)
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and cut into wedges
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 bay leaf
1⁄4 tsp ground cinnamon
1⁄8 – 1⁄4 tsp ground cloves (to taste)
1⁄4 tsp ground allspice
1⁄4 tsp ground black pepper
1 head cabbage, cut into wedges, rinsed and drained
6 medium white potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 -2 lb carrot, peeled and cut into 3-inch pieces
Rinse corned beef under cold water, and pat dry.
In a Dutch oven, or other large pot with a cover, brown corned beef well on all sides over high heat.
Pour Guinness over the meat and add enough water to just cover the brisket.
Add the onion, garlic, bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves, allspice and pepper to the pot.
Bring pot to a boil and skim off any foam.
Reduce heat to a simmer. Cover pot and simmer for 3 hours.
Add carrots, then potatoes and then the cabbage wedges to the pot.
Cover pot, and continue cooking until meat and vegetables are tender (about 20-30 minutes).
Remove meat and vegetables to warm serving platter/dishes, leaving the cooking liquid/sauce in the pot.
Over high heat, bring the cooking liquid to a boil, and cook until the amount of liquid is reduced by half (about 10 minutes).
Slice the corned beef; serve with the vegetables and the sauce on the side.
Note: Corned beef should always be sliced across the grain.