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Cuddle a Coddle

Beannachtaí Lá Fhéile Phádraig daoibh go léir (that’s happy St Patrick’s Day to the non Gaelic speakers)

If it’s one thing that is etched in my memory, it has to be St Patricks Day. I’m not really sure why this is, maybe it was growing up in Ireland in the sixties, when we all attended mass EVERY Sunday and listened to the priest shouting at you from the pulpit about how we were all sinners and St Patrick was a great man or maybe it’s because to me, St Patrick was the mystical figure who banished all the snakes from Ireland.

In true Irish style, that’s sounds like a good enough excuse to have a day of celebration and afterwards, retire to the local pub, where in those days you could do your shopping at the front of the bar and grab a pint or two of the black stuff at the back, and what’s wrong with that?

To honour the great man I have made my mum’s famous “Irish Coddle, it’s a sort of Irish hotpot but without the fuss of a stew, just throw it all into the pot and get on with the ironing.

Coddle would be put on the stove around 8pm and would be left on a gentle simmer for the man of the house to stumble in after the pub has closed and have his supper in peace, so nothing’s changed there then!

Here we go: Irish Coddle

  • 2 large white onions, cut into quarters
  • 4 large pork sausages, cut in half, from your local butcher, use good quality meat it really tastes better
  • 4 salty, thickly cut rashers of bacon, cut into 1” slices, as above
  • 2 large potatoes, in quarters
  • 4 carrots, chopped
  • 500ml good chicken stock
  • big handful finely chopped curly parsley
  • salt and pepper

Get your oven on at 160F, gently fry off your onion for around 15 minutes until soft, add sausages and bacon and fry until just colouring. Add carrots and potatoes, fry gently for 5 minutes, add stock, parsley and seasoning. Bring to a gentle boil and into the oven for 1 ½  to 2 hours. Serve with a crunchy bread or soda bread and a pint (or two) of the black stuff.

And remember as they say in Ireland……..

Is minic a bhris béal duine a shrón.

(Many a time a man’s mouth broke his nose)

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