Saint Patrick, Guinness Corned Beef And Getting Pinched

Wishing all, a very Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!

Even though I am including an easy recipe for “Guinness Corned Beef and Cabbage”, this blog will focus more on the origins of Saint Patrick and how this meal became to be. First thing you need to know is “Corned Beef and Cabbage” is not a traditional meal in Ireland for this holiday. It became popular in American among the Irish Immigrants. You may be asking yourself, how come it is in every Irish Pub and sold in supermarkets like it’s going out of style around Saint Patrick’s Day? For the answer we need to look back in time.

In a time far, far away – beef was not readily available in Ireland. Beef was expensive and considered a luxury. Pork products on the other hand were in abundance and less expensive. Traditional Irish meals during this time period were centered around ham and other cuts like bacon. Corned beef and cabbage is more of an American meal, with the Irish equivalent being boiled bacon and cabbage. The vegetable cabbage was added due to also being very affordable.

The Irish culture were known for producing salted meat products which were costly. They would barter these expensive meats and keep the less expensive cuts like salted pork for themselves. When they immigrated to America, they found that beef was surprisingly affordable. With brisket being a very inexpensive cut of meat. Irish-Americans began boiling the brisket the same way they would boil bacon and presto, the meal corned beef and cabbage was born.

To this day in Ireland, it is rare to find families eating this meal. Especially on a holiday like Saint Patrick’s Day. From speaking to many friends and acquaintances that are from Ireland, they have stated on holidays a couple of the traditional meals served in their home are lamb and/or a ham.

But where does Saint Patrick come into the story? Saint Patrick was born during the fourteenth century in Roman Britain. At the age of sixteen he was kidnapped and brought to Ireland as a slave. He eventually escaped and later returned to Ireland on a mission to convert the pagan culture to Christianity. He was also responsible for the construction of many churches throughout Ireland. Shamrocks came into the mix because Saint Patrick would use the clover as a way to teach the Irish pagans of the Holy Trinity. It was used as a visual tool. We celebrate Saint Patrick and the Irish culture on March 17th, which is the day of his death.

Throughout the world celebrations are held to commemorate Saint Patrick, the patron saint of engineers. In the United States, this day has become full of parades, family meals and a day of celebrating. With that being said it’s time to get out your Green. For Saint Patrick’s Day is upon us. If you don’t, you may get pinched. Huh? Pinched? Folklore says the reason for wearing the color green on Saint Patrick’s Day is because this color will make you invisible to leprechauns. If you fail to wear green, a leprechaun will run up and pinch you simply because they can. So if you don’t wear green on this day and feel a pinch, turn around and look down before you slap the person behind you. You may slap and innocent person, as the leprechaun scampers away.

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day and enjoy!

Guinness Corned Beef And Cabbage

  • 1 Corned Beef
  • 1 Head of Cabbage
  • 4 Potatoes peeled
  • 4 Carrots peeled and cut in half
  • 1 Can of Stout beer (I use Guinness)
  • Spice packet (I don’t use it. But if you wan to use it , feel free.)


  • Place the corned beef in a pot
  • Pour the beer in the pot
  • Fill the pot where the corned beef is completely covered
  • Put in spice packet (Optional)
  • Bring to a boil
  • Once the pot boils, lower to a simmer
  • Cook for 50 minutes per pound
  • 45 minutes before it is done, add the potatoes
  • 30 minutes before it is done, add the cabbage and carrots
  • Slice and serve

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Gaven says:

    Well done Nick… a good and accurate read and glad you did not try to add your signature Italian flare anywhere near the dish.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Gaven! I like to stay true to the culture & cuisine I’m cooking. Lol. Happy St. Partty’s to U & the family!


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