We had the most outrageously beautiful weather in Northeast Ohio this weekend, which was perfect for our St. Patty’s Day/weekend events!
The fiance was in Delaware all week for work, so I was non-stop running errands, prepping the house, outlining food plans and cleaning.
I was exhausted driving home from work Friday afternoon, but it was so good to have him home and get down to all the final food preparation.
The evening went by in the blink of an eye. We wanted to have both authentic and ‘Americanized’ food for our guests, so the menu looked something like this:
- Corned beef
- Cabbage and carrots
- Irish sausage
- Parsnips with nutmeg
- Irish soda farls and jam
- Aero bars
A couple guests also offered to bring pasta salad, veggie trays, cupcakes, cake and other cookies so we had everything covered.
Of course I picked up all the appropriate beverages, servingware and decorations, including the awesome hats we’re sporting here. (Awesome in so far as they were $1 each.)
Saturday morning was a final sweep of the house and then our friends arrived– some to carpool downtown for the parade, and another to get instructions for when to start heating the food since we were going to be cutting it close getting back from the parade in advance of our guests showing up. Although I know better, I told my family the actual time we wanted them to show up– meaning they were planning to be there about one hour prior to that time, meaning no one would be there. Minor glitch, and we were able to work it all out.
The parade was just ok– I loved the bands and the dancers and some of the unusual floats, but I could have done without the 1,000 Girl Scout troops and the family/friends/neighbors/random acquaintances of the people in the parade who were all walking along in non-matching outfits on their cell phones as if they were dragged to participate in the event. Suggestion for future parades: be more selective in who marches. The parade did not need to last three hours, and we definitely didn’t stay that long.
On a positive note, the weather was beautiful, we had awesome seats and we were able to park and leave very easily, which was an original concern as we heard reports of an anticipated 300,000 parade attendees. Turns out there were more like 500,000 viewers, so we were lucky.
Saturday afternoon the party began at 4 p.m. and throughout the afternoon/evening we ended up with about 30 people.
We had a few relatives spend the night– it was their first time seeing our house– so we stayed up with them until midnight and then finally called it so we would be able to get up early the next morning.
Sunday at 7:30 a.m. I started the potato farls and by 9:30 a.m. more friends were arriving for Ulster Fry breakfasts. I found a shop in Parma called Gaelic Imports where I bought white and black pudding, and I bought my Heinz beans at Giant Eagle. The fiance made homemade bacon, I fried up the eggs and soda bread and we were set! The black pudding turned out a little dry, but everything else was fantastic.
We hosted two other St. Patty’s Day parties for our family and friends, but the event keeps getting better each time– more attendees, more authentic cuisine, more time together. This was also the first one we hosted in our new house so I have more ideas for how we can improve moving forward.
We couldn’t have asked for a better time or better weather– who would have thought we’d be in shorts on the patio in Ohio mid-March?
I’ll chalk it up to the luck o’the Irish!