St Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. His feast day is celebrated on 17th March every year and there are parades held on this day right across the world. There are many known facts about the man but there are even more myths and legends that have gathered up over the years. Generally the Irish are a superstitious people and even though we know most of these myths not to be true, you will be hard pushed to find anyone in Ireland who will actually openly deny that to be the case.
When you go to any country you are going to want to eat. The best guide to help you find out where to eat in Ireland is the 100 Best Restaurants 2017 John and Sally McKennas’ Guides. Ths will help you find all the best places to eat, shop and stay in Ireland. It is a local guide to local places.
The Best Restaurants in Dublin by Andy Hayler.
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Cinema ModeOff. Cafes and Restaurants in Belfast. This video shows you the lovely cafes and restaurants in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Among the global cities vying for the title of Best Cuisine, one may assume Dublin is an underdog. But to discount Ireland’s largest city would be a big mistake. In Dublin, local chefs embrace the bounty of the Emerald Isle. Verdant fields yield impeccable produce, and the coastal waters offer the freshest, finest seafood. The restaurant scene is multi-faceted; elevated, but not fussy. Simple, but not boring. Join Aida as she travels to Fishshop, The Pig’s Ear, and Chapter One.
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Ireland’s rich culinary heritage is brought to life in this new edition of Darina’s bestselling Irish Traditional Cooking. With 300 traditional dishes, including 100 new recipes, this is the most comprehensive and entertaining tome on the subject. Each recipe is accompanied with tips, tales, historical insights and common Irish customs, many of which have been passed down from one generation to the next. Darina’s fascination with Ireland’s culinary heritage is illustrated with chapters on Broths & Soups, Fish, Game, Vegetables and Cakes & Biscuits. She uses the finest of Ireland’s natural produce to give us recipes such as Sea Spinach Soup, Potted Ballycotton Shrimps with Melba Toast and Rhubarb Fool.
First published nearly twenty years ago, and now extensively revised and updated, this new edition allows Darina Allen to share her enthusiasm for Ireland’s fresh, wholesome, seasonal food with a new generation of cooks.
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Rediscover the simple pleasures of a home-cooked meal, Irish-style. This fresh and appealing collection presents tried-and-true family recipes shared by local moms and grandmothers. The dishes range from distinctly traditional Irish fare (often with interesting twists) to those with international influences. Enjoy Brown Soda Bread, Fragrant Chicken Curry, Braised Derrynaflan Brisket, Sweet Fruit Scones with homemade jam, and much, much more.
Irish Stew. Photo by Abbeyve.
Ireland is a land of contrasts, striving for economic and industrial growth, yet still a profoundly traditional rural and agricultural country. The interplay between these two forces gives Ireland much of its charm, and in this book Darina Allen draws on the many different aspects of Irish life in which food plays an important part. The book presents more than 300 traditional recipes from all over Ireland, both country and town, served at all kinds of occasions, including country fairs, markets and dances, Hallowe’en, Easter and Christmas celebrations, and religious ceremonies, weddings, christenings and wakes.
Chef Mooney Style Irish Stew Cookin with Surfin Sapo.
Chef Mooney Style Irish Stew
1. One leg of lamb – cut into bite size
2. Seven white potatoes- peeled & quartered
3. Two turnips aka swede – peeled & cut into bite size
4. One bag of parsnips – peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
5. Three large carrots – peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
6. Half of a large onion – chopped into medium pieces
7. Quart of beef stock
8. Small can of tomato paste
9. Flour – coating to lamb pieces
10. Fiestas Uncle Chris’s Steak Seasoning
11. Olive oil – as needed
12. Parsley – chopped
1. Sprinkle all the lamb with Uncle Chris’s steak seasoning and then boat with flour.
2. Put about 1/8 cup of oil in a large pot and get it hot. Put as much lamb in the oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Brown all sides of the lamb. Set browned lamb in another large pot and continue to brown all the lamb.
3. Now add the onion to the lamb and cook until onions are semi clear.
4. Make a clear spot in the middle of the pan and add the tomato paste and warm it up to thin it out.
5. Add the potatoes and stir them around. Medium heat.
6. You can add some beef stock if it gets too thick.
7. Add all the rest of the veggies
8. Pour all the beef stock in and bring to a simmer.
9. Simmer on med-low for 1.5 to 2.0 hours.
10. Ladle into a bowl and garnish with chopped parsley…
ENJOY!!! Thanks to Mooney’s Kitchen on YouTube for the recipe..
St. Patrick’s Day Parade Dublin 2016 by Ireland Travel Advice
Saint Patrick depicted with shamrock in detail of stained glass window in St. Benin’s Church, Kilbennan, County Galway, Ireland. Photo by Andreas F. Borchert.
Who Is Saint Patrick?
I will begin with the facts that we do know of. He was actually born in Scotland and was also known to have wealthy parents called Calpurnius and Conchessa who were Romans. Nothing is clear from history of the precise year in which he was born but it is estimated that this was around 385 AD. Between the age of fourteen and sixteen years of age, Patrick was taken prisoner by a group of Irish raiders who took him to Ireland where he spent six years as a slave in captivity. The precise location is not recorded but many claim this to be at Mount Slemish, near to Ballymena in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It is also known he worked as a shepherd.
Slemish, County Antrim. Photo by Albert Bridge.
He did escape when he was around 22-23 years of age. After that and according to his own documented writing God spoke to him in a dream and told him he had to leave Ireland and then when he returned to Britain he had a second dream that he was to go back to Ireland as a missionary. St Patrick began his religious training, and it lasted more than fifteen years. He was ordained as a priest by St Germanus, and then sent back to Ireland with the task of ministering to the few Christians already in Ireland and to begin to convert the Irish to Christianity. He was later made a bishop.
Ireland at that time was a country full of pagan beliefs and strong fixed cultures. Patrick would have been aware of this and also fluent in the Irish language. Rathern that fight against that he incorporated his Christian teachings with their old beliefs. An example of this was the creation of the Celtic Cross where he added the sun in the centre of the standard Christian cross. He also used the common growing shamrock to explain concept of the Holy Trinity. Its three leaves represented God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, A classical myth is that he drove the snakes out of Ireland, but the reality was that they never existed in Ireland in the first place. All I can tell you is there are no snaked in Ireland, so read from that what you will.
St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated on the 17th March and is believed to be the date of his death though again this is not officially recorded anywhere. Historians believe he died at Saul which is near Downpatrick in Northern Ireland around the year 461.
I am an avid reader of anything to do with Irish History and have been studying this subject for many year. I trust you find this article informative.
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Stone of Turoe, Co. Galway, Ireland. Phot by Dirk Huth.
The Celts have had a great influence on Ireland. Evidence of this can be found in the early art. A style of art called La Tene, that was practiced in Europe and evidence of this has been found in the northern part of Ireland. An example of this is the Turo stone, a granite stone decorated in a Celtic style located in the village of Bullaun, County Galway, Ireland. It probably dates to about the period 100 BC to 100 AD. The stone is now positioned in a covered protective structure on the lawn in front of Turoe House, set in a concrete base surrounded by a metal cattle grill. The Turoe stone is National Monument of Ireland.
The Iron Age And The Celts
The Bronze Age ended as iron was introduced into Ireland, around the sixth century BC. What is interesting is that this knowledge of iron-working reached Britain around 800 BC, and there is very little evidence of the use of iron in Ireland. Some metal objects have been found but mainly in rivers and lakes and this makes them impossible to date with any degree of certainty. Celtic speaking people existed in Europe and it seems pretty clear that they also came to and existed in Ireland. It can not however be assumed that they are responsible for the introduction of the metal iron into Ireland. It is important to note that the Romans never came to Ireland and may explain many of the cultural differences and also a gap in technology.
There is however a style of art called La Tene, that was practised in Europe and evidence of this has been found in the northern part of Ireland. This culture centred in Switzerland around 1500-1000 BC and then expanded across Europe around 400 BC. The culture was removed by the Romans and existed only in places which had not been influenced by the Romans, and Ireland was one of those. This culture is associated with advanced forms of metalwork, decorative ornamentation, jewelry and goldsmithery and these were the strengths of the Celts.
The Celts who had a reputation for being fearsome warriors were defeated due to the political nature of their culture which consisted of a loose network of tribal societies rather than a centralised authority which the Romans clearly possessed. The earlier Hallstatt civilisation was based in Austria and then shifted to the Rhine and the Alps with trade missions to Spain, Britain and Ireland. They settled all of Gaul but their culture impact did vary from region to region, and was based on trade rather than by violence. There are some stones in Ireland that show the wonderful inscriptions of the La Tene culture such as the Castlestrange Stone in County Roscommon.
The weapons of this period point to one thing, the importance of close quarter fighting. Weapons used are swords, spears; bronze trumpets and these were found along with gold ornaments. Another interesting find has been various horse trappings, including bridle bits. We also know that a form of wooden tracking has been uncovered in County Longford.
The most significant that we can ascertain from this period is that Ireland did indeed possess a spoken language. That language was a Celtic one and it became the language of that day. Archaeological evidence does teach us that the Celts came to Ireland between 500 BC and 500 AD. Quite often Gaul is directly associated with the Celts and it is best explained like this. The area known as Gaul included all of France, Belgium and most of Switzerland. The word Gaul does get equated with the word Keltoi or Celt, but not all of Gaul was actually Celtic. There were areas of Gaul that had associations with other races, Iberian, Ligurian, Greeks at Marseilles and Germans from along the Rhine.
Despite this, we know that the legacy of the Celts lives on and we know that because of the language. Celts spoke what is known as an Indo-European language which developed into “P-Celtic,” and this was known as the speech of Britain and Gaul, ancestor of Welsh and Breton, and also into Q-Celtic, the language of the people of Ireland, ancestor of the Gaelic and now the Irish language.
The Celts did have a primitive alphabet known as the Ogam or Ogham which used a series of notches, cut into the edge of a stone. The Q Celts could not pronounce the letter “p” so they either didn’t use it or changed it to a “q” type sound. Speakers of Irish can understand Scots Gaelic but will not be able to understand Welsh or Breton at all, as for the last 2,000 years these languages have grown and developed. What is strange about the Celts is that where other peoples left their various marks on the Irish landscape, that is not the same for the Celts, yet they developed a language that is still surviving and spoken today.
To summarise in P-Celtic the word for son is “Mab” which is linked with Gaul or Brythonic (British), whereas in Q-Celtic the word for son is “Mac” in Goidelic and can be seen on primitive Irish Ogham inscriptions. Remember that the Celts were a loose amalgam of tribes and as such they left little behind except the form of writing known as either Ogam or Ogham. This script was used in Ireland from around the 4th to the 8th Century.
There is very little written evidence in existence to generate a picture of what Ireland must have looked like in these times. There are some small pieces of information available from writers like, Gaius Julius Solinus, a Latin grammarian, Tactitus a Roman historian, and Strabo the Greek. The common theme from all these early writers is that they viewed Ireland as being situated on the edge of the known world at that time, that its inhabitants were classed as barbaric and that Ireland, simply because of its location would be rich in crops and free of any pestilence.
A quite unknown fact and sometimes I think intentionally forgotten was that Solinus actually recorded that there were no snakes in Ireland a good two hundred years before the arrival of Saint Patrick. Hopefully that answers a question I am often asked about Saint Patrick banishing the snakes from Ireland. Snakes did not exist in Ireland since the Ice Age, so he could not have banished what did not exist!
Ireland never was part of the Roman Empire but was no doubt influenced by it as it lay close to its neighbour Britain. Roman power there declined in the fifth century AD and the Irish started to plunder there. The most successful of these was the Dal Riata of the Glens of Antrim who plundered the districts of Argyll and the Hebrides. Again quite an unknown fact was that the Romans called Ireland Scotia, but such was the impact of the Dal Riata community at that time on their successful plundering, the name Scotia was transferred to that area, and as such Scotland was born. This also happened in parts of Wales.
I am an avid reader of anything to do with Irish History and have been studying this subject for many year. I trust you find this article informative.
With this guide, you can explore lively Dublin, quaint Kilkenny, and the moss-draped ruins of the Ring of Kerry. Navigate meandering back roads that lead to windswept crags on the dramatic Dingle Peninsula. Explore Ireland’s revered past by following St. Patrick’s footsteps to the Rock of Cashel. Marvel at Newgrange, the mysterious mound older than the pyramids; then connect with today’s Irish culture by grabbing a pint at the local pub, enjoying the fiddle music, and jumping into conversations that buzz with brogue.
Newgrange passage grave. Photo by Shira.
Newgrange is a Stone Age (Neolithic) monument in the Boyne Valley, County Meath. Newgrange was constructed about 5,200 years ago (3,200 B.C.) which is believed to be before Stonehenge and the Great Pyramids of Giza.
Brú na Bóinne aerial picture by Pasztilla.