Shepherd’s Pie, Shamrock’s and Shillelagh’s; A St. Patrick’s Day Feast!

As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about……….more being Irish on St. Patrick’s Day! March 17th is the feast day of the Patron Saint of Ireland, St. Patrick. What better way to celebrate a feast day than with a feast?!? Even a tricky little leprechaun couldn’t talk my family into eating corned beef and cabbage, which is why I made a feast of a different kind:

Shepherd’s Pie

Shillelagh Sautéed Broccoli

Irish Soda Bread

Minty Milkshakes


Delicious dinners are best enjoyed at a beautiful table. To me Ireland represents both the gorgeous, rustic countryside and the elegance of fine china, cut crystal, and stunning linens. I love the juxtaposition of the casual with the formal. I covered my table with a cheerful, apple green tablecloth with paisley’s and floral scrolls, and rich brown woven placemats. More of everything is always better so I added a gold leaf charger, white china with a scalloped edge and a dessert plate with Kelly green paisley’s (to echo the paisley in my tablecloth). Ireland always makes me think of wonderful textures, like nubby burlap, which is why I chose one of my favorite, heavily woven napkins. Again, I love the combination of rustic with elegant, so I chose to use green beaded napkin rings. Of course, nothing but the sparkle of cut crystal would do for both the water and wine glasses. As a centerpiece, I filled a footed glass pedestal bowl with fingerling potatoes, flanked by shamrock plants (Oxalis) and crystal candlesticks. For a little extra charm, I placed a sweet clown, adorned with shamrocks and a framed needlepoint “Kiss Me I’m Irish” plaque.  


With such a hearty meal planned, I only put out a few little snacks; Kerry Gold Reserve Cheddar, Blarney Castle Smooth and Creamy Gouda with salami and crackers. Fresh veggies are always a hit, so I placed the carrots, cucumbers, snap peas and peppers in individual cabbage leaves. They were just darling.

Shepherd’s Pie:

4 lbs of boneless beef short ribs (can be cut into smaller 1” cubes)

3 Tbsp vegetable oil

6 cloves of garlic

1 ½ Tbsp fresh chopped rosemary

1 ½ Tbsp Worcestershire sauce

Salt and pepper

1 onion, peeled, quartered and sliced

¾ cup turnips, peeled and chopped

1 ½ cups carrots, peeled and chopped

1 ½ cups parsnips, peeled and chopped

2 cups tomatoes, diced

2 bay leaves

1 ½ cups beef broth

1 cup red wine

Champ Potatoes:

5 lbs potatoes, peeled and cubed

1 cup of buttermilk

6-8 scallions, sliced and rough chopped

1 stick of butter

Pre-heat the oven to 300°

In a large bowl, combine;


1 Tbsp oil



Worcestershire Sauce

Salt and pepper

In a skillet, heat 2 Tbsp oil, over medium-high heat

Add beef and brown on all sides

Remove beef and place in a baking dish 

Add onions and sauté for approximately 4 minutes

Turn off heat and add to the onions;





Bay leaves

Mix well

Evenly spread over beef in baking dish


In the skillet, heat;



Pour over beef and vegetables

Cover with aluminum foil

Place in the oven

Cook for two hours

In the meantime, you can get the potatoes prepped. No need to start cooking them though until the last 40 minutes that the beef is cooking.

Champ Potatoes:

Place butter, sliced into Tbsp size pieces, into a large bowl

In a large stock pot, cover the potatoes with cold water, bring to a boil and reduce heat to low.

Cook for 25-30 minutes, or until tender


Pour potatoes on top of butter, so the butter melts a little bit

In a saucepan, add;



Heat through and simmer for about 5 minutes

Add milk and scallions to potatoes and butter, mashing with a potato masher or hand mixer

After 2 hours, remove the beef from the oven

Pre-heat the broiler

Skim a few cups of juice from the beef

Cover the entire baking dish with potatoes

Broil until the potatoes are lightly golden, only a few moments and watch carefully

While the beef is cooking, you can make the Irish Soda Bread

2 eggs, beaten

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 cups of flour

½ tsp salt

½ tsp baking soda

1 cup of buttermilk, plus more if needed

Pre-heat oven to 400°

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper

In a small bowl, beat eggs and set aside

Grate Parmesan cheese and set aside

In a large bowl, mix together;



Baking soda

Add milk, a few Tbsp’s at a time, turning into a soft dough

You may need to add a little extra milk so the dough isn’t so sticky

Knead until the dough is well combined


On a floured surface, knead dough and roll out into a rectangle shape, approximately 1/2” thick.

Cut dough into 12 rectangular pieces

Brush each piece with egg wash

Sprinkle with Parmesan Cheese

Place dough onto parchment paper

Bake in oven for approximately 15-20 minutes, or until nicely browned

Shillelagh Sautéed Broccoli:

1 lb broccoli florets

1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

2 tsp brown sugar

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 tsp red pepper flakes

Salt and pepper to taste

Broccoli can be prepared in advance

Prepare and ice bath

Bring a pot of water to a boil

Add broccoli and cook for approximately 3-4 minutes (you don’t want the broccoli to get mushy)

Drain and submerge in ice bath

Drain again and place on paper towels to soak up the moisture

If you are preparing the broccoli in advance, place it in a paper towel lined Ziploc baggie and refrigerate until ready to use


Add the brown sugar to the Parmesan cheese and set aside

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat

Add the cooked broccoli, seasoning with the pepper flakes, salt and pepper

Toss, so the broccoli is well coated, cooking for 2-3 minutes

Turn off the heat and sprinkle generously with the Parmesan cheese mixture


On a dinner plate, place heaping spoonful of the Shepherd’s Pie, broccoli and the Irish Soda Bread.

If you still have room for dessert, there’s our Minty Milkshakes


1 ½ quarts softened, vanilla ice cream

1 ½ cups milk

York Peppermint Patties

Green food coloring

Whipped cream

In a blender crush 8 peppermint patties

Add ice cream


Several drops of food coloring

Blend until well mixed

Pour into tall glasses

Garnish with whipped cream and a peppermint pattie



Irish Blessing:

Like the warmth of the sun
And the light of the day,
May the luck of the Irish
shine bright on your way.

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!!

More celebrating, more sharing meals, more Irish Blessings…..

Feast Of St. Patrick: Shepherd’s Pie
Shillalegh Sauteed Broccoli



Filed under More is More Mom

3 responses to “Shepherd’s Pie, Shamrock’s and Shillelagh’s; A St. Patrick’s Day Feast!

  1. Brenda

    HAHAHA….love the centerpiece of potatoes! Funny.

    Looks delicious, V…..gotta try this one!

    • I thought the potatoes were funny too! The Shepherd’s Pie was delicious. Nick had two heaping, helpings and requested the remaining leftovers for dinner the following night!

  2. jim

    Nice Shepherd’s Pie Recipe 🙂

    I was going to try the bellow recipe but I think I will try yours instead.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s