Dinner Tonight: Last Minute St. Patrick's Day Ideas

Some of you probably started brining your homemade corned beef days ago. Other enterprising types made a beef and Guinness stew in the slow cooker this morning. But there's still hope for the procrastinators among us, daydreaming about an Irish supper this evening. Here's our St. Patrick's Day menu, which requires nothing more than a quick trip to an average grocery store, and less than an hour to cook:

Tonight, we're making corned beef hash. Though it would be far superior with homemade corned beef, grocery store goods will work fine. For a side dish, you really can't get more Irish than colcannon – mashed potatoes mixed with leeks and cabbage, then browned under the broiler. Since there are already potatoes in the hash, we'll adjust this recipe by increasing the amount of cabbage and leeks, but keep it all creamy and comforting.

Absinthe cupcakes would be delicious for dessert, but after a long day at work, we're ready for a tall, frothy Guinness milkshake.

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Here are a few other links from around the internet that would make for a delicious last minute St. Patrick's Day Supper:

• Lamb stew takes several hours, but caraway and fennel crusted loin of lamb can be done in under 30 minutes. No loin of lamb at your grocers? Try these same seasonings on lamb chops.

Irish potato soup with cheese and red ale sounds incredibly soothing and rich.

Bacon and cabbage may be an even more traditional combination than corned beef and cabbage.

• Like mashed potatoes? Try the colcannon above, boxty, an Irish potato pancake, or champ.

• Since kids care more about the "wearing o' the green" than being authentically Irish, serve breakfast for dinner with Green Eggs and Ham.

• Perhaps the easiest last minute St. Patrick's Day dinner is a Ploughman's meal – a cold plate of nice Irish cheddar, some pickled onions, a piece of crusty bread, apple slices, and a hard-boiled egg.

What are you making for St. Patrick's Day dinner tonight?

Photos: Corned Beef Hash from Epicurious.com, Colcannon from MarthaStewart.com, Potato Soup from Relish magazine.

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