St. Patrick's Day is celebrated in observance of St. Patrick who died on March 17, 461; he converted many to Christianity in his lifetime. Traditionally, the Irish observed this day as a religious holiday. On this day, Lenten prohibitions against the eating of meat were lifted and people could enjoy the customary meal of Irish bacon and cabbage. Until the 1970’s, pubs were closed in Ireland pursuant to law. In 1995, the Irish government began a tourism campaign to draw travelers to Ireland for St. Patrick’s Day so alcohol is enjoyed liberally now throughout the country for St. Patty celebrations.
This holiday is enjoyed throughout the world, including the United States. We typify the day by wearing green, attending parades, imbibing in verdant ale, and consuming millions of pounds of corned beef and cabbage. The festive holiday is big business in many American cities that dye major bodies of water to pay homage to the spirit of tradition: Chicago dyes its river, In dianapolis dyes its main canal; Savannah dyes its downtown city fountains; Jamestown, New York dyes the Chadakoin River; and Columbia, South Carolina dyes its Five Points fountain.
My pond isn’t up and running yet, so I’ll have to celebrate with a green dessert. By the way, this is also a good reason to buy Thin Mints from your favorite Girl Scout…
Mint Cookie Pie (serves 8)
1 package of cream cheese
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
1 tsp of peppermint extract
15 drops of green food coloring
1 box of chocolate mint cookies (like Thin Mints or Keebler Grasshopper), reserve 8
1 regular container of extra creamy Cool Whip
1 chocolate crumb pie shell
1. Beat cream cheese until fluffy.
2. Add milk, extract, and food coloring then beat till smooth.
3. Crumble cookies by hand (you want small pieces and larger chunks) and stir into mixture.
4. Fold in Cool Whip.
5. Pour into pie shell and freeze overnight.
6. Garnish pie with reserved cookies, chopped Andes Mints or a drizzle of Hot Fudge.