Putting the ROCK in Shamrock: Recipes Inspired by Ireland's Greatest Hits

By: Holly Bryce

St. Patrick's Day is just around the corner, which means it's time for all things Guinness and green. But the Irish have given us so much more than stouts and lucky leprechauns. Since the 1960s, it's been a nation that has marched to the beat of different (and very talented) drummers. From Van Morrison to U2, the Emerald Isle has been turning out some of the world's greatest musical talent for decades.   This St. Patrick's day, we're celebrating these artists with some recipes inspired by their greatest hits. Turn up the volume and preheat those ovens, because it's time to put the rock back in shamrock.

Van Morrison's "Brown Eyed Girl" Meets the Irish Pirate

It doesn't matter what colored eyes you have; when this song comes on, you gotta sing and dance along.  And much like Van's "Brown Eyed Girl,"  our milkshake recipe is all grown up and ready to hit the town. Meet the  Irish Pirate, Cooking Channel's  adult version of the infamous mint Shamrock Shake. Full of fresh minty flavor, this sweet and creamy drink has a shot of rum in the mix that you might not taste but might just feel. A few sips and you'll be singin' sha-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la la-ti-da...  

Thin Lizzy's "The Boys Are Back In Town" (And They're Hungry) Irish Stew:

Reuniting with the boys this St. Paddy's day weekend? Then you'll need a hearty meal to keep them satisfied (and sober). Try Tyler Florence's ultimate  Irish stew, an authentic recipe he learned from a friend in County Cork, Ireland. Simmered over the stove top for hours, meaty chunks of lamb, chopped carrot and, of course, plenty of potatoes are all rendered soft and tender. It's a simple one-pot dish designed for sharing and lasting stamina.

The Cranberries “Linger” in Honey Butter:

Ah, The Cranberries.  Their music transports us back to the 90s in the best way. The band formed in Limerick in 1989, but it was a new female lead singer and songwriter Dolores O'Riordan that launched the group into stardom. In her honor, why not give your St. Patrick's Day feast a feminine and flavorful touch by whipping up a quick batch of this yummy  Cranberry Honey Butter. Not only is the band's namesake in the mix, it's got the perfect balance of sweet and tart cran-citrus flavor. Plus pink butter is just way cuter than regular butter (and definitely more appetizing than green). Spread it liberally over a slice of Irish soda bread ... or anything edible, really. Do you have to? Do you have to? Do you have to...? Of course not. But you're missing out if you don't.

The Script's "Hall of Fame" Irish Soda Bread:  

The band members from The Script grew up together in Dublin, and now they're one of the hottest things since sliced (Irish soda) bread. Their single, "Hall of Fame" is all about striving for and achieving greatness, and if we had to choose one Irish recipe that deserves a place in the  culinary hall of fame, it would have to be Irish soda bread. Kelsey's recipe yields a loaf that's wonderfully crunchy on the outside, dense and moist on the inside, and studded with sweet and sour black currants. Cut yourself a slice, spread on some butter, and you've got yourself a breakfast o' champions.

Ain't love the sweetest thing? Sure, but it's not always the easiest — just ask Bono. The lead singer of the world's most famous Irish rock band wrote this song as an apology for forgetting his wife's birthday. If only we had shared this recipe for Chocolate Stout Cupcakes in time. Just like their "stormy kind of love,"  these delicious cakes are full the rich, dark and stormy flavors of cocoa and stout, and the tangy cream cheese frosting is reminiscent of the famously frothy head on a Guinness.  All told, they're the sweetest thing you could bring to a St. Patrick's Day party, and hey, it's  never too late for makeup cupcakes, Bono.

The Pogues with Kirsty McColl & Mint Cheesecake

If you're not familiar with this 80's Celtic punk band, you're in for a treat. With their unmistakably Irish sound, the Pogues tell a story of romance and nostalgia in New York City. Though the love story eventually sours, the song builds into a cheerful Celtic jig that's perfect for your St. Paddy's Day playlist. And if you're left feeling hungry for a happy ending, try this dreamy Mint Cheesecake with Chocolate Cookie Crust. It's the quintessential New York dessert with a festive nod to Ireland in its color and design.

For more St. Patrick's Day recipe ideas, check out these galleries. Happy St. Patrick's Day, everyone!

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