Monday, March 17, 2008

When Irish Eyes Are Smiling

New York City has a marvelous capacity for celebration. St. Patrick's Day is a fine example. My daughter and her boyfriend stopped at the corner deli for a six-pack of Killian's Irish Red for our traditional corned beef dinner. Mr. R. the deli man, who is a Sikh, asked if she is Irish. She said yes, and Spanish and Native American and German and Welsh. When she informed him everyone is Irish on St. Patrick's Day, he put his hands in the air and laughed a hearty laugh. He thought that was an excellent idea. In fact, he thought we should all be Irish or Sikh or Korean or any of the scores of nationalities here in the borough of Queens, for at least a day. Imagine what a city it would be if we all knew a little bit more about one another. I say let's go global with that concept.

We prepare our corned beef the traditional way, boiling it with spices, bay leaves, onions and a carrot. Then we take it to the next level, baking it for a while in a coating of brown sugar, chili powder, tomato juice and beer. Kind of cosmopolitan, absolutely delish. We must have at least four kinds of Irish soda bread, with and without raisins, I love caraway seeds and some that tastes like cake. All are sampled, all are so good. Traditions are important, but nothing is carved in stone as far as celebrating St. Patrick's Day. New traditions begin and continue for new generations. Here's to the Irish and the celebration of diversity in this great city.

Pic~Shannon & Christine

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