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Have a low carb St Patrick's Day

Michele Borboa, MS is a freelance writer and editor specializing in health, fitness, food, lifestyle, and pets. Michele is a health and wellness expert, personal chef, cookbook author, and pet-lover based in Bozeman, Montana. She is also...

Low carb Irish recipes

St Patrick's Day is a near effortless low carb holiday. Corned beef and cabbage, pub salads, Irish stew, and other dishes are high in protein, loaded with flavor and perfect fare to nosh while keeping in line with your low carb diet. The following St Patrick's Day recipes are easy to prepare and will delight every one of your St Patrick's Day party guests, even the ones who aren't on a low carb plan.

Irish Stew

Low carb St Patrick's Day recipes

Irish Pub Salad

Serves 6 to 8

Even if it is a holiday, you still need your veggies. This pub salad is bursting with tantalizing tastes and textures and can be eaten as a main course or as a side.

Ingredients:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon malt vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon
2 to 3 teaspoons water
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 cups Bibb lettuce, torn
1/2 cucumber, thinly sliced crosswise
1/2 cup very thinly sliced red onion
1 cup diced, seeded tomato
4 hard-cooked eggs, peeled, cut into sixths or eighths
4 ounces crumbled blue cheese

Directions:
1. In a large bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, malt vinegar, mustard and tarragon. Whisk in enough water to make a pourable consistency. Season with salt and pepper.

2. Add lettuce to bowl and toss. Add cucumber, red onion and tomato and toss to coat. Divide salad evenly among 6 to 8 salad plates and top with eggs and cheese.

Low Carb Irish Stew

Serves 8

Warm, filling and flavorful, this stew is a delectable main course meal for your St Patrick's Day party menu. Traditionally, Irish stew is loaded with potatoes; this low carb recipe replaces the bulk of high carb potatoes with low carb cabbage and celery.

Ingredients:
8 small lamb chops
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon each whole peppercorns, rosemary, thyme
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 leek, white part thinly sliced white
4 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 cups celery stalks, diced
Vegetable broth
1 large potato, diced
2 to 3 cups shredded cabbage
1 cup peas

Directions:
1. Season lamb with salt and pepper and set aside. Tie parsley, bay leaf peppercorns, rosemary and thyme in a piece of cheesecloth and set aside.

2. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Brown pork chops on both sides. Transfer to a plate and keep warm.

3. Add onion, leek, garlic and celery to the saucepan and cook, stirring often, until vegetables are soft and lightly browned.

4. Add lamb chops, potato and cabbage to saucepan, stirring to combine. Add enough vegetable broth to cover and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 25 minutes or until lamb is cooked through and potatoes and cabbage are tender.

5. Add peas and simmer for 10 more minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning. Garnish with fresh parsley to serve.

Basic Irish Sausages

Makes 2 pounds

Homemade sausage is a treat for any get together. Serve them as party nibbles or incorporate them into another St Patrick's Day dish. Naturally low in carbs, you'll find yourself making Irish sausages year round.

Ingredients:
1-1/2 pounds lean pork
8 ounces pork fat, without gristle
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Pinch dried sage or marjoram
1 ounce breadcrumbs (optional)
Ground ginger, mace, nutmeg, clove, and/or cayenne to taste

Directions:
1. Mince the meat and fat twice, then mix very well and season. (Fry a teaspoon or so each time to check the flavor until you get it the way you like it.)

2. Add the herbs, breadcrumbs and any spices you prefer.

3. Make traditional link sausages by filling casings or form into patties. Broil or grill link sausages or cook patties in a saucepan over medium high heat.

Low Carb Irish Coffee

Makes 1 drink

Beer is the traditional drink for St Patrick's Day, but it is also typically a high carb offering. Opt for low carb brews or have a specialty Irish coffee or two.

Ingredients:
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar substitute
1 jigger Irish whiskey
Hot strong black coffee
Whipped cream (unsweetened)

Directions:
1. Stir together sugar and Irish whiskey in a mug. Add coffee almost to top.

2. Top with whipped cream and serve.

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