St Patrick’s Day recipes: Feast on Irish rarebit, Guinness stew and black and gold brownies

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Watch: Healthy St Patrick's Day recipes

St Patrick’s Day is the big day for anyone Irish – or anyone even vaguely related to anyone Irish, or anyone who loves the craic. 17 March requires a feast inspired by the Emerald Isle, and these recipes are all based on the black stuff. Sláinte!

Irish rarebit

Irish Rarebit (Flic Everett)
Irish rarebit (Flic Everett)

So much more than cheese on toast, this simple but delicious supper is perfect for one.

Serves: 1


1 large slice of sourdough bread

30g strong cheddar (or other strong farmhouse cheese)

½ tsp wholegrain mustard

½ egg yolk (whisked)

½ tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tbsp Guinness/Irish stout

salt and pepper


1. Lightly toast the bread on both sides under a medium grill.

2. Grate the cheese into a bowl, and mix in all the other ingredients.

3. Spread over the sourdough and replace under the grill. Make sure you reach the edges with the mixture, or the bread will burn.

4. Heat until golden and bubbling. Serve with lightly dressed green leaves.

Read more: Quick and easy recipes for kids lunchboxes

Irish stew with Guinness

Irish stew with Guinness (Getty)
Irish stew with Guinness (Getty)

This hearty beef stew is rich, warming and just the thing to have bubbling on the stove after a cold, wet day.

Serves: 4


400g casserole steak, cut into cubes

2 tbsps seasoned plain flour

15g butter

1 tbsp olive oil

3 pieces streaky bacon

1 onion, chopped

1 stalk of celery, chopped

1 clove garlic, finely minced

1 tbsp tomato purée

100ml Guinness/Irish stout

300ml beef stock

2 peeled carrots, chopped

1 bay leaf

2-3 sprigs thyme

salt and pepper


1. Toss the cubed beef in the seasoned flour on a plate.

2. Melt the butter over medium heat in a lidded casserole pan and brown the beef, scraping the flour from the bottom as you stir.

3. Set the browned beef to one side, and add olive oil to the pan. Cook the bacon, onions and celery for 10-15 minutes over low heat, to soften. (Many recipes blatantly lie and say 3-4 minutes. This will not work.)

4. Add the garlic, and cook through for 2 minutes, before stirring in the tomato purée.

5. Pour in the Guinness and bring to the boil before reducing to a simmer. Add the stock, browned beef, carrots, bay leaf, thyme and seasoning, give it a good stir and put the lid on. Leave for 2 hours over low heat, stirring occasionally.

6. Taste, stir and season again before serving with crusty bread or potatoes.

Watch: St Patrick’s Day recipes: Irish soda bread, cupcakes

Black and gold brownies

Black and gold brownies (Flic Everett)
Black and gold brownies (Flic Everett)

Gold might be a mild exaggeration – but these squares of joy are chocolate treats featuring both Guinness and white chocolate buttons, so who’s complaining?

Makes: 12


50g dark chocolate, broken up

50g milk chocolate, broken up

75g butter, softened

125g granulated sugar

60ml Guinness/Irish stout

1 large egg (or 1.5 small)

½ tsp vanilla essence

2 tbsps cocoa powder

100g plain flour

50g white chocolate buttons

Icing sugar


1. Preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan). Grease and baking paper-line a 27 x 20cm tin. If you don’t have one, fold the baking paper to form a ‘wall’ the right size in a larger tin.

2. Place a large heatproof bowl over a pan ¼-filled with very gently simmering water. Break the milk and plain chocolate in, and add the butter.

3. Allow to melt. Don’t raise the heat, or the chocolate will seize and you’ll have to start again. Remove from heat and stir to make sure it’s fully mixed.

4. Whisk in the sugar, then add the Guinness and whisk in. Add the egg and the vanilla essence and – you guessed it - whisk.

5. Fold in the flour and cocoa powder, till everything is incorporated. Pour the mixture into the baking tray. Bang it once on the table, to break up bubbles.

6. Dot the top with the white chocolate buttons, and put it in the oven.

7. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the top is firm, and the middle still slightly squishy. The buttons will be a light gold colour. Leave to cool in the tray.

8. Sprinkle with icing sugar, and cut into squares.

Read more: 5 healthy low-salt recipes so full of flavour you won't miss the seasoning

Watch: 10 Things You May Not Know About St. Patrick's Day

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