“May the leprechauns be near you, to spread luck along your way.

And, may all the Irish angels smile upon you on St. Patrick’s Day.”


Corned beef is a long-standing American St. Patrick’s Day tradition. In Ireland, the St. Patrick’s Day meal would most likely be ham and cabbage. Corned beef is a beef brisket or round roast cured in brine, which leaves the meat bright red and flavorful. The meat remains pink when cooked, and because the beef is a tough cut of meat, requires longer cooking to render it tender. “Corned” refers to the salt grains used many years ago to cure or preserve meats. For fork-tender results, never boil corned beef. My easy recipe is a crock pot version of the classic method still preferred by most chefs. This week’s entrée offers a tasty twist on the traditional Reuben. Reuben Strudel features a savory filling of corned beef, sauerkraut and Swiss cheese enhanced by layered wrappers of buttery phyllo pastry. Irish Flag Clementine and Cucumber Salad is a colorful addition to any St. Patrick’s Day celebration. Clementines are the smallest type of Mandarin oranges. They’re super sweet, seedless and have skins that are smooth and shiny. Light, bright and oh-so sweet, Leprechaun Pistachio Fluff can be eaten as a side dish or a dessert. Everyone’s a little bit Irish on St. Patrick’s Day! There’s no better time to sample a few favorite Irish recipes and raise your glass to all things green. Erin go bragh! Ireland forever!


Reuben Strudel

For the corned beef:

1 (4-pound) corned beef brisket

Place corned beef in a crock pot, fat side up. Add seasoning packet and cover meat with water. Cover and cook on high heat for 6 to 7 hours or until meat is tender.  Remove corned beef from crock pot and place in a baking dish. Using a fork, gently remove fat and discard. Slice corned beef against the grain, diagonally and thin.

To make the strudel:

1 pound cooked corned beef, thinly sliced

1 (16-ounce) jar sauerkraut

1 teaspoon caraway seeds

1 small onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

¼ cup melted *Irish butter

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

16 sheets frozen phyllo pastry, thawed in refrigerator

2 cups shredded Swiss cheese

Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray; set aside. Cut corned beef into ½-inch strips; set aside. Drain sauerkraut; squeeze dry and place in a medium bowl. Add caraway seeds, onion, and garlic to sauerkraut; mix well to combine. In a small bowl, mix melted butter with Dijon mustard; set aside. Unfold phyllo. Stack 8 sheets of phyllo on a flat surface covered with wax paper, brushing every other sheet with the butter-mustard mixture. Spoon half of the sauerkraut mixture lengthwise down half of phyllo stack, spreading to within 2 inches of edges. Top with half of corned beef and half of cheese. Fold in the short edges 2 inches and roll up, starting at long edge of phyllo nearest the filling. Place, seam side down, on prepared baking sheet. Cut ¼-inch-deep diagonal slits, 1 inch apart, across top. Repeat procedure with remaining phyllo dough, butter mixture and filling. Brush both strudels with remaining butter-mustard mixture. Bake in a preheated 400-degree oven for 18 to 20 minutes or until golden. Cut diagonally into 4-inch slices. Serve immediately. Serves 6 to 8. *Irish butter may be found on the refrigerated dairy aisle of your local grocery store.


Irish Flag Clementine and Cucumber Salad

If you can’t find clementines, substitute tangerines or canned Mandarin oranges.

For the vinaigrette:
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup white balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon honey
Salt and pepper, to taste
Mix all ingredients in a small jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake to combine. Refrigerate any leftovers.

For the salad:

10 cups mixed salad greens

6 medium clementines, peeled and cut into ¼-inch slices

½ English cucumber, thinly sliced

¼ medium white onion, halved and thinly sliced

½ cup crumbled goat cheese

1/3 cup salted and roasted pistachios, shelled

Place greens in a large bowl or on a large platter. Top with sliced clementines, sliced cucumbers, and white onion slices. Drizzle with vinaigrette. Top with crumbled goat cheese and pistachios before serving. Serves 6.


Leprechaun Pistachio Fluff

This simple recipe is creamy, sweet, and just a little bit addictive.

1 (20-ounce) can crushed pineapple with juice, undrained

1 (3.4-ounce) package pistachio instant pudding mix

Several drops of green food coloring, optional

1 (8-ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

1 cup miniature marshmallows

1 cup chopped pecans

½ cup flaked coconut

Garnish: fresh cherries, coconut

In a large bowl, mix pineapple with pudding mix and food coloring. Fold in whipped topping, marshmallows, pecans, and coconut. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Garnish with cherries and coconut before serving. Serves 8.


The writer owns Catering by Debbi Covington and is the author of three cookbooks, Celebrate Beaufort, Celebrate Everything! and Dining Under the Carolina Moon. For more great recipes and to view her cooking demonstrations, visit and subscribe to Debbi’s YouTube channel. Debbi’s website address is www.cateringbydebbicovington.com. She may be reached at 843-525-0350 or by email at dbc@cateringbydebbicovington.com.