Recipe: Get into the Irish spirit

Metro Creative

St. Patrick’s Day began as an opportunity to honor St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, who was credited with bringing Christianity to this island nation. Through the years, St. Patrick’s Day has transformed into a celebration of Irish culture as well as a day for fun and fanfare. Of course, no celebration would be complete without delicious food.

Although corned beef may not be the most authentic representation of Irish cuisine, it certainly has become synonymous with St. Patrick’s Day. During the early influx of Irish immigrants to North America, corned beef was more readily available than some other cuts of meat from the Emerald Isle. When cooking St. Patrick's Day dinner this year, the process can be made even easier with the use of a slow cooker. Try this recipe for “Corned Beef and Cabbage” from “Crock•Pot 365 Year-Round Recipes” (Publications International) from the Crock•Pot kitchens.

Corned Beef and Cabbage

Makes 6 to 8 servings

• 12 new red potatoes, quartered

• 4 carrots, sliced

• 1 corned beef brisket (about 4 pounds)

• 2 onions, sliced

• 3 whole bay leaves

• 8 whole black peppercorns

• 1 head cabbage, cut into wedges

1. Place potatoes and carrots in bottom of slow cooker. Add brisket, onions, bay leaves, and peppercorns. Add enough water to cover brisket. Cover; cook on low 4 to 5 hours or on high 2 to 2 1/2 hours.

2. Add cabbage. Continue cooking on low 4 to 5 hours longer or on high 2 to 2 1/2 hours longer. Slice brisket against the grain and serve with vegetables.