Recipe Test Nest » 5 Star » Happy St. Patty’s Day
Happy St. Patty’s Day

I’ve always loved St. Patrick’s Day, I mean really, who doesn’t like a good pinch every now and then? I have a lil’ bit o’ Irish in my blood (something like 9 generations back, and there are conflicting accounts), so I wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to host a “green” TEST NEST. Guests testers Mindy Booth, Jason & Erica Gardner (plus baby in tummy), Jane Madsen, David Caine, Tim Tanner and Sally Atkinson all came with their festive spirits (but I forgot to take a picture of everyone in green). Here are the results:

Mocktail: Mint Mojito (3 Star)

I’m sure that any Mojito recipe you could find would work great. I didn’t have a cocktail shaker or a way to press the mint leaves to release their flavor so I’ll have to keep working on this one. I used powdered sugar, which is a good substitute for superfine (caster) sugar. Of course you’ll want to squeeze fresh lime juice and use the sparkling water of your choice.

Appetizer: Crostini with Feta Chile Spread (4 Star)

This recipe is fairly easy to make and was full of flavor. If you have sensitive skin I’d recommend wearing gloves while peeling the chilies after blackening them. My hands were burning so bad that I had to go to bed with an ice pack wrapped around them.

1st Course: Leek Soup (4 Star)

I can’t find the exact recipe I used from William & Sonoma to link, but it called for leeks, onions, celery and one potato so it was a really simple leek soup, but the color turned out beautifully light green. I used croutons, fresh grated parmesan cheese and parsley for the garnish.

2nd Course: Chicken & Artichoke Fricassee with Morel Mushrooms (4.5 Star)

This recipe is full of complex flavors and is fairly intricate but not really difficult to make. This dish is expensive to make because of the Morel Mushrooms. I was first introduced to Morels by Bill Atkinson, so I had to call the expert to help me locate them. Since they were not in season I had to use dried Morels (still very expensive) and soak them in water. They turned out just as flavorful. If you’ve never had a dish with Morels I’d recommend trying one, they really are a prized delicatessen for gourmet cooking. If you hate mushrooms trying Morels will change your mind.

Dessert: Lucky Mint Brownies (5 Star)

I used a Hershey’s recipe for the Brownies and then my sis-in-law’s recipe for the mint frosting. The brownie was perfect and easy to make so I’ll probably stick to this one and continue to try lots of different toppings. One tester thought the icing was a little too thick but he was quickly overruled by the others who were of the opinion that you can take off the frosting if you’re someone who doesn’t like it as sweet.

5 Comments (Leave a Reply)

  1. Jane (March 19, 2010)

    The whole night was amazing – food and company! I'm still dreaming about the Chicken Fricasse and mint brownies! Thanks Amber!

  2. Mindy (March 22, 2010)

    I'm still thinking about those brownies, which by definition gives them a score of 5. YUM.

    The whole meal was lovely. And I might have to try that leek soup myself, although I might add a couple more potatoes just to give it some more body.

  3. Monster Mary (March 22, 2010)

    Looks yummy. We went to a little party and I took some chicken saag. It actually turned out pretty good. If you want to tackle some indian I'll pass it along. You may actually be able to find some of the more authentic ingredients in the city.

    I may have to try those mushrooms as I am not a mushroom lover. They say mushrooming here in AK is lots of fun but I've not had any interest.

    Thanks for sharing. I love reading adventures in food. Oh and I love leeks. They are so flavorful. I'm sure the soup was yummy.

  4. Tango (March 23, 2010)

    We were probably the only people in the city getting our calories from FOOD on St. Patrick's Day. Everything delicious, thanks for absolutely making the holiday Amber! loved the complex flavors of the main dish and how moist the chicken was.

  5. J.R.G. (April 16, 2010)

    My comments are long overdue. Despite the fact that the food was consumed some weeks ago, the flavors have not been forgotten. Food was fantastic. Soup was divine. The Crostini, perfectly spicy. Erica and I keep talking about when we will do it again. Thanks Amber. Well Done!

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