Happy St Patrick’s Day – Celebrate Safely at Home with Traditional Irish Soda Bread

Reading Ireland Month 2021
What in the world were we thinking?

Driving an old Class A RV to the coast where I’d signed up for a craft booth to sell my grandfather’s books on Rockaway Beach, Oregon. Too expensive to stay at a park there, we found a cheaper one a few miles south where we parked and shuttled into the Pirate Festival. One of the other booth sales ladies told me about the pirate festival in Oregon when I rented craft spaces in the Yuma Winter Craft Shows. I thought it sounded like so much fun I put in my reservation and after we got home to Idaho planned the trip for the following June for the CE’s and our son’s birthday.

But, hey, it’s the Oregon coast. Can you say R A I N? (Cold…wind)

Arriving in the rain Friday evening, I was a little dismayed thinking about trying to set up our display in the wind and rain on Saturday. I was prepared with boxes of my grandfather’s books (his books regarding sailing often included stories of pirates), a “treasure chest,” trinkets, and pirate scarves. My daughter got right into the whole scene, hand  made hair braiding strings (she even decorated the Jack Sparrow look-alike with one), and we had other pirate related gedunks.

To celebrate the birthdays (son born on my hubby’s birthday), we found a special traditional Irish café and ordered a big pot of corned beef and cabbage. The lady there—SOOO gracious and generous—threw in soda bread for us all. (We bought the cake and candles separately.)

So it is that I remember with fondness the soda bread, though I’ve not done so grand a job as the lady in Rockaway Beach. Just in case, however, that you also have a fondness for traditional Irish Soda Bread, I’ve attached a page here containing a special family recipe from one of my favorite Irish authors, Jean Grainger, who just released Last Port of Call, her first book in a new series she calls The Queenstown Series (as well as a second recipe I’ve yet to try but sounds easy). Jean posted her soda bread recipe a couple years ago in response to requests. Last Port of Call is the #1 Bestsellerin the Historical Irish Fiction genre. Do yourself a favor and check out her new book—my review scheduled on Friday, March 19.

Have a safe and happy March 17! 

©2021 V Williams

Soda bread attribute: Jean Grainger

Rosepoint #Reviews – February Recap

Irish flag gif by giphyCan you believe it’s March already?! March always reminds me how this whole writing, reading, blogging, reviewing thing got started–with my grandfather, of course!

Well, Faith and Begorrah (and btw, Begorrah is a form of “By God” in Irish slang), sure reminds me of the beautiful, musical way he pronounced my name. I don’t ever remember him, however, using the term “Erin Go Bragh,” spelled variously and used in wildly different meanings. Erin, of course, is the Angelical assassination of Eireann, which translates to “Of Ireland.” (The Irish word for Ireland is Eire, so says Patrick Murphy, good Irish lad.)

Ireland 9 by gliterly.comMy grandfather, another good Irish lad named Patrick, professed a few more colorful terms, such as “Blatherskite,” given him by his uncle following his kiss of the Blarney stone three times. Apparently, that bestowed him full right to blarney on as he wrote the stories I published for him. Ah, but I digress…

February? I only read and reviewed five books. I KNOW–embarrassing, right? Falling down on the job, no doubt due to my distraction with Bookstagram. However, I was successful in enlisting the aid of my hubby, that Associate Reviewer I call “the CE”, who managed three books of his own. And I did manage three Throwback Thursdays, highlighting authors D. W. Ulsterman, Rick Mofina, and Melissa Stevens (not to be confused with Melissa F Miller from yesterday).

Shadow of a Century by Jean Grainerfor The Love of Ireland by Judy LeslieI’m looking forward to participating in Cathy‘s Reading Ireland challenge, as noted in Lynne’s Fictionophile March post. I already have a couple books for the challenge, one by Jean Grainger, Irish author, Shadow of a Century and another titled For the Love of Ireland by Judy Leslie. It’s a chance to get a couple titles off my TBR!

March hopes to see the coming of spring and also marks another of my birthdays. Gulp–and this one will be a biggee. I’ll toast with some Bailey’s Irish Cream! So what did I read and review in February? (click) Continue reading “Rosepoint #Reviews – February Recap”

Beans, Beans, the Musical Fruit

Beans, Beans, the Musical Fruit….

 “I was thinking we could get a corned beef and make a big  pot of corned beef and cabbage,” my son enthused. His green eyes sparkled at the thought of it.corned-beef

He waxed poetic about the ole days when we would celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with corned beef and cabbage. A toast to my grandfather, the author of those manuscripts I’ve struggled with the last few years, and to our alleged Irish ancestors–but then everyone claims to be Irish for that one day–a fully excused and actually obligatory Guinness celebration. Continue reading “Beans, Beans, the Musical Fruit”