Celebrate the Luck O' the Irish With a Magically Delicious Menu

Saturday morning television during my childhood was filled with some of the most bizarre creatures - tiny blue creatures living in mushroom houses, magical little ponies with mullets, mutant turtles named after renowned Renaissance artists, and a little leprechaun throwing around "nutritious" cereal made of pink hearts, yellow moons, orange stars, green clovers, and blue diamonds.

Fast forward 25 years, and many of these cartoon creatures still remain popular along with the magical deliciousness of Lucky Charms. While the regular Lucky Charms are formulated with oats and off-limits, Chocolate Lucky Charms are formulated with corn and do not contain any gluten ingredients. I did contact General Mills and their statement on Chocolate Lucky Charms is as follows:

"Directly below ingredients listing for any General Mills product, you will see a "contains or may contain" statement. If an ingredient is not listed there, you can be 100% assured it does not contain ingredients nor has been in contact with ingredients. In the case of dairy, there is no dairy nor has there been any contact with dairy. In the case of gluten, there is no gluten in the ingredients but due to possibility of cross-contamination we cannot label this product as gluten free."

My son enjoyed them at his kindergarten class party last St.Patrick's Day without issue, and they will make an appearance at the breakfast table again this week as we celebrate with some of our favorite St. Patrick's Day traditions below.

Crockpot Corned Beef and Cabbage with Carrots

It's a must-have every St. Patrick's Day. Not only is this recipe super easy to prepare, but also a great way to get your kids to eat cabbage without even trying. The secret ingredient is the bottle of beer. There are several different brands of gluten free corned beef on the market, Grobbel's and Bea's Best, to name two.  Grobbel's is available at Walmart.

5-6 carrots, cut into large chunks
2 lbs potatoes, cut into large chunks
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 onion chopped
3 lb corned beef brisket
1 bottle Redbridge Gluten Free Beer
2 tbsp French's yellow mustard
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup water
1 head of cabbage, cut into large wedges

Add carrots, celery, potatoes, cabbage, and onions to crockpot. Place corned beef on top of vegetables in crockpot and add seasoning mix (make sure it is gluten free as well). Mix the brown sugar and water together, then add to crockpot. Pour bottle of gluten free beer over brisket and spread mustard on top. Place lid on crockpot and cook on medium for 6 hours.

Bubble and Squeak

One problem with corned beef and cabbage every year is the lack of leftover corned beef and overabundance of cabbage. I forget that the meat cooks down and ends up much smaller than it first appears. Meanwhile, the potatoes and cabbage seem to multiply during cooking. Never fear, bubble and squeak is here. A traditional English dish, it is a great way to use up leftovers into tasty fried cakes. Serve with a dollop of brown mustard or with a side of chutney or cranberry-blackberry relish.

Leftover boiled potatoes, cabbage, carrots, and onion
Green peas
Few slices of leftover corned beef, diced
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/4 cup uncooked polenta
1/4 tsp Lawry's seasoned salt
1 tsp French's yellow mustard
Oil for frying

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Heat a large frying pan on medium-high heat and add oil. Drain juice from leftover potatoes, cabbage, carrots, and onion and place vegetables in a large bowl. Add green peas or whatever additional cooked vegetables you wish to the bowl.  Add diced corned beef and yellow mustard. Mash entire mixture with a potato masher. In a separate shallow dish, combine the brown rice, polenta, and Lawry's seasoned salt. Form the vegetable-corned beef mixture into patties, dredge each patty in the flour mixture, then fry in frying pan until golden. Place patties onto lined baking sheet and finish in oven for 5-10 minutes.

Shamrock Shakes

We make our McDonald's knock-offs gluten and dairy free, but you'd never know the difference. The end result is a thick, minty beverage that's sure to delight any little lactose intolerant leprechaun.

2 cups Luna & Larry's Coconut Bliss Vanilla Island ice cream (or other gluten free and dairy free vanilla ice cream)
1 cup Silk Vanilla Almond milk
1/4 tsp mint extract (McCormick's brand is gluten free)
4-5 drops green food coloring (McCormick's brand is gluten free)

Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until milkshake consistency. Garnish with a dollop of Soyatoo Rice Whip non-dairy whipped cream.

Don't Forget that Naughty Leprechaun!

The kids are already talking about what the naughty leprechaun is going to do this year. Along with Santa, the Tooth Fairy, and the Easter Bunny, the Naughty Leprechaun has become another late night visitor to our household. This one has left little footprints in our hallway, turned over some chairs and small tables, peed green in our toilet, and of course, eaten some Chocolate Lucky Charms with green almond milk. Our naughty leprechaun happens to be gluten and dairy free:)




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