Food for Thought: Celebrate Irish roots with food, music this weekend

Loretto Hulse, Tri-City Herald staff writerMarch 12, 2014 


Corned beef with molasses glaze. (J. Kyle Keener/Detroit Free Press/MCT)


No matter what country your ancestors call home, everyone can feel a wee bit 'o the Irish flowing through their veins when they celebrate St. Patrick's Day.

A good place to start is March 15 at the Center for Spiritual Living's corned beef dinner and concert in Kennewick.

The dinner begins at 6 p.m. Guitarist/singer Michael Mandrell of Portland will play Celtic tunes beginning at 6:30 p.m. Cost is $10.

The Center for Spiritual Living is at 210 E. Third Ave. For more information, call 586-3747.

Or learn to cook traditional Irish fare at a class from 3 to 6 p.m. March 16 at Three Rivers Winery in Walla Walla.

The class will be taught by Chef Sarah Roy. You will learn to make a traditional soda bread, a hearty Shepherd's Pie and a decadent Chocolate Orange Guinness Cake.

Cost is $45 or $40 for wine club members. To register, call 509-526-9463, ext. 1.

The winery is at 5641 W. Highway 12, Walla Walla.

-- Green beer

To make your own green beer this St. Patrick's Day, the McCormick Kitchens suggests adding five to six drops of green food coloring to a 12-ounce mug of beer.

-- Warming bread loaves

To reheat a whole loaf of bread, follow this tip from the Bread Experience website.

Place it in an oven at 350 degrees either wrapped in aluminum foil or unwrapped. Heat for 15 to 20 minutes.

It's best to wrap sliced breads and rolls before reheating so they don't dry out.

Or reheat in the microwave, unwrapped, for about 15 seconds on high power.

-- Banana storage tips

To keep bananas from ripening too fast once you bring them home, follow this tip from the extension staff at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Let them ripen on the counter for a day or two, then store them in the fridge. The skin will brown but the cold will slow down the ripening process.

Another way to keep bananas is to freeze them and use them in smoothies. Simply cut them into slices, lay them in a single layer on a plastic wrap-lined cookie sheet and freeze. Once they're solidly frozen, store in a reclosable plastic freezer bag.

-- Good read

The book: Betty Crocker Cookbook: 1500 Recipes for the Way You Cook Today.

Cost: $17.

Best for: This 11th edition includes hundreds of new recipes, photos showing how to make classics like apple pie and roast turkey, mini recipes in a single paragraph and bonus videos available online.

-- Loretto J. Hulse: 582-1513; To receive a recipe via email each Tuesday, register at and click on newsletters. This exclusive recipe does not appear in the newspaper.

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