Sunday, March 18, 2007

Corned Beef and Cabbage - Fact or Fiction?

So, you think that Corned Beef and Cabage is the traditional Irish meal at St. Patrick's day? I have it on good authority that this just is not true. Corned Beef is apparently more of an English meal, not Irish. A meal that is eaten in Ireland is boiled bacon and cabbage.

So there you have it, and lest you forget, here is a funny poem by Frances Shilliday to help us remember:

I just want to put something straight
About what should be on your plate,
If it's corned beef you're makin'
You're sadly mistaken,
That isn't what Irishmen ate.

If you ever go over the pond
You'll find it's of bacon they're fond,
All crispy and fried,
With some cabbage beside,
And a big scoop of praties beyond.

Your average Pat was a peasant
Who could not afford beef or pheasant.
On the end of his fork
Was a bit of salt pork,
As a change from potatoes 'twas pleasant.

This custom the Yanks have invented,
Is an error they've never repented,
But bacon's the stuff
That all Irishmen scoff,
With fried cabbage it is supplemented.

So please get it right this St. Paddy's.
Don't feed this old beef to your daddies.
It may be much flasher,
But a simple old rasher,
Is what you should eat with your tatties.

©Frances Shilliday 2004, please visit her website which debunks other myths including this little ditty.

Although it may not be the traditional meal, I must admit to you that I had Corned Beef and Cabbage on St. Patrick's day. Yes, it is true. I was first introduced to this meal by my husband and I have to say that I truly enjoy it with a nice side of spicy brown mustard. Shhh, don't tell, lest someone be angry, but I think that we will have some again next year.

Copyright Antonella DeFalco

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