How about a little recipe on this Irish Holiday? Several things announce the entrance of Spring: the longer days, warmer breezes, whispers of green that sneakily begin appearing amongst the grays of winter. Saint Patrick’s Day seems to declare to Winter “You shall not pass!” and Winter submits, quietly yielding to Spring’s advance. This must be true because days that follow St. Patrick’s Day are notably warmer and brighter!
Not only is Spring evident in nature, Spring is equally evident on my dinner table! Fresh green beans & new potatoes are one of my favorite Spring & Summer sides.
So what makes these green beans & potatoes Irish?? AND, how do the potatoes get jackets??
Well, let’s start with the jackets. Jackets are the skins, isn’t that so cute?? My aunt has told me for years about how grandma and grandma’s mom would refer to unpeeled potatoes as “potatoes with their jackets on”. She, ((my aunt)) visited Ireland several years back and while there, she noted “potatoes with jackets on” as a menu item at a local restaurant. In a flash, dots were connected. A little glimpse into our heritage!
Irish potatoes are something I have made for years, even as a single girl living alone – over 20 years ago. There is something so comforting about simple potatoes steamed and topped with butter & fresh parsley.
For this dish, I boiled fresh green beans in a salted, chicken stock water for 45 minutes. About 20 minutes in to the cooking process, I added the quartered potatoes with jackets still on.
The hardest part of making these beans & potatoes is snapping off the ends. “Lucky” for me, I have the best kitchen help money can’t buy! ((Notice her little busy hands micro-chopping the life out of the fresh beans in the photo below, she is a treat!))
Once the potatoes were fork tender and the green beans were cooked perfectly, I scooped them out of the pot & placed them in a serving bowl. A pat of Irish butter, a nice handful of chopped fresh parsley and some cracked black pepper finish this simple dish off.
I am happy to say the kiddos & hubby loved these Irish potatoes in their jackets as much as their momma! Happy Spring & happy tums.
- 1 1/2 lbs fresh green beans, trimmed & cleaned
- 6 medium red potatoes, unpeeled and quartered
- 2 T kosher salt
- 2 t chicken bouillon
- 1/2 c chopped fresh parsley
- 2 T butter
- salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
- Add green beans, water, salt & bouillon to a large pot, filling the with water to 2"-3" below the top of the pot.
- Bring to boil, cover with lid and allow to gently boil for 20-30 minutes. Add quartered potatoes and continue on a gentle boil until the potatoes are fork tender. ((Meaning a fork can be easily inserted and removed.))
- Remove beans and potatoes from water, place in a serving bowl, top with parsley & butter and season to taste.