Monday, March 23, 2009

for the love of ireland

* photo taken on inishmore (aran islands) during my last trip to ireland

last tuesday was one of my most favorite days of the patrick's day! I am irish and although i married into an english family, thankfully my husband loves and appreciates the green isle as much as me :)

despite an abunance of irish pride here in the united states, i've found most things thought to be irish a little on the tacky side. in the spirit of the holiday, i went in search of some authentic... or at least really cute irish products. when you want something creative and original where better to head than etsy! just as i suspected the wonderland of handmade goods did not disappoint. here are some of my favorites.

1. this beutiful connemara marble necklace by mythiclassie is one of a kind! made of a marble found only in ireland, i was drawn to it because connemara was a favorite region for ryan and i during our last trip. its peaceful solitude seemed to exemplify the nature of western ireland.

2. these irish pirate elf boots by superfay are way too fun to pass up! they happen to combine two of my favorites, pirates and the irish! they remind me of something my funky, sister-in-law diane would love :) arrr!

3. the my goodness, my guiness mitten wristwarmers by lovelambie are gorgeous! i love the story behind their creation and will insist on visiting the designer's studio on a future trip to ireland!

4. when i saw these adorable leggings by animblethimble, i immediately thought of my teddy bear! with all the crawling he does these days, i am constantly looking for better ways to protect his delicate little knees.

5. last, a very favorite of mine, nine birds by kschulz. my irish friend, kelly painted these lovely birds. although chickadees are not native to ireland, the gorgeous green background and tree branch just gives me a lucky kind of feel. i'm positive the leprechauns would approve.

our family too, made its own irish creation in celebration of the season. i had been on the hunt for new ways to cook using cabbage and this recipe turned out to be delicious! special thanks to aimee for sending it my way!

Country Potato and Cabbage Soup

* photo taken once soup was complete!


3 tablespoon(s) extra-virgin olive oil
4 ounce(s) thick-cut bacon, diced
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 leek, white and tender green parts thinly sliced
1/2 cup(s) dry white wine
6 parsley sprigs
6 thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
1 pound(s) small red potatoes, thinly sliced
6 cup(s) chicken stock
1 pound(s) (4 cups) green cabbage, finely shredded
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoon(s) chives, snipped
3 slice(s) (1/2-inch-thick) country bread, cut into cubes
2 clove(s) garlic, lightly smashed
2 tablespoon(s) minced parsley


1. In a soup pot, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add the bacon and cook over moderately high heat until crisp, 5 minutes. Add the onion and leek and cook over low heat until softened, 10 minutes. Add the wine and simmer until nearly evaporated, 5 minutes.
2. Tie the parsley sprigs, thyme sprigs and bay leaf with string; add to the pot along with the potatoes and stock. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the potatoes are tender, 10 minutes. Add the cabbage, season with salt and pepper and simmer until the cabbage is tender, 10 to 15 minutes longer. Discard the herb bundle. Stir in the chives.
3. Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the bread and garlic and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until the croutons are golden brown, 6 minutes; discard the garlic. Season with salt and sprinkle with the parsley.
4. Ladle the soup into deep bowls. Sprinkle with the croutons and serve.

"it's easy to halve the potato where there's love. "
irish proverb


  1. I love all your etsy finds! It truly is a wonderland. My favorite item is that necklace and the soup you made. It is so nice of you to support etsy artists. Free promotions are appreciated by all!

    I think I need to book a ticket to come see you so we can make an irish meal and dress up little teddy bear. I am in need of a change of scenery and Im not really in the mood for MN yet. Plus, I have never seen Colorado! Let me know your thoughts.

  2. Thanks so much for mentioning me. What a lovely description of my necklace. And your potato and cabbage soup looks delicious. I'll have to try your recipe. Thanks!