The Way Mammy Used to Make it #100DaysOfOldDays

Day 27 #100DaysOfOldDays #WQW

“Ample food an sturdy drink, a pillow for your head.  And may you be 40 years in heaven before the devil knows you’re dead!” – Irish Blessing

“Make it like Mammy used to.”

That’s what a husband dared to say long ago. He wouldn’t get away with saying it nowadays. If he insinuated in any way that his wife’s cooking wasn’t up to his Mammy’s standard, one of two things would happen; the tolerant wife would pretend she didn’t hear him and he’d eat what he was given, or the intolerant wife would send him home to his mammy with his suitcase!

“I’m not ignoring you…I’m practicing selective hearing.” Linda Poindexter.

But we must admit, there was something special about the Irish stew, the treacle bread, and the boxty. Even the jelly and custard was different back in the day.

What was the secret? Was it all the salt? Or the bitta sugar that went into everything. The Yummy Mummy of today wouldn’t dream of adding sugar to her carrots.

Maybe the secret is that it was made with love!

♡ ♡ ♡

Maybe boxty was so good because it was fried on a hot skillet or in a pan of lots of grease; probably lard. It tasted too good!

‘Boxty on the griddle, boxty on the pan, if you can’t make boxty, you’ll never get a man.’

Maybe that rhyme encouraged the young women to perfect the boxty recipe!

Here it is for anyone out there trying to grab the attention of a promising young Irish bachelor!

Peel and grate 4 potatoes. Mix with 2 oz of plain flour,1 egg, pinch of bread soda and a pinch of salt. Heat oil of your choice, (and a wee knob of butter) on a frying pan. When you ‘hear’ it sizzling, form your mixture into separate little patties and fry on the pan for about 3 minutes on each side.

There’s nothing more homely and comforting than the sight of a loaf of bread fresh out of the oven. I think the traditional Irish soda bread was so good back then because they didn’t measure the ingredients. Here’s how my mammy used to make it.

A couple of handfuls of flour, a good big lump of butter, a bit of salt, a few spouts of buttermilk, a small spoon of bread soda and don’t forget the sugar. Stick it in the oven until it’s nice and brown. If the oven gets too hot, open the door of the range a wee bit.  

Coddle was a one-pot dish made with the leftovers from the week. Potatoes, onion, carrots, bacon and sausage. I’m sure it’s a stew you could put anything into.

Colcannon was another common dinner in Irish homes. Simple and nutritious. Creamy mashed potatoes with cabbage mixed through it. Often served with boiled bacon. Still a favourite today in some households. The good ‘old bacon and cabbage!

“There’s no place like home Bridie.” Nedzer

We can’t talk about Irish food without the mention of Irish beverages.

Irish Coffee. There’s a special way to make it. I’ve mastered it!

Lightly whip about two tablespoons of cream. Pour freshly brewed coffee into a hot mug or heatproof glass. Add 50ml of Paddy whiskey. Stir in ½ – 1 tsp of brown sugar. The next part is very important. Warm a teaspoon. Gently pour the cream onto the back of the spoon while holding it close to the coffee. As soon as it ‘touches’ the coffee, it should spread nicely across the top of it, rather than mix through it.

Guinness. Guinness is on the go since 1759. I will be dedicating a full post to Guinness sometime during my #100DaysOfOldDays.

I usually drink Guinness when I’m in a pub. It’s a good session drink because once I get to my 5th small glass I’ve had enough, and it never gives me a hangover. (Yes, I know I know…five small glasses is hardly a session)

They say there’s eating and drinking in Guinness, which is a good thing when you’re from Cavan.

Jameson whiskey. One of the oldest distilleries in Ireland and Stephano’s favourite whiskey! Like Guinness, I will be giving Jameson a post of its own at some point during our #100DaysOfOldDays

Hot whiskey. According to my in-house whiskey expert, Paddy makes a good hot one. (Not Paddy from over the road – Paddy the whiskey.) Now, you can’t have a hot whiskey without a slice of lemon studded with cloves. You just can’t. Your sense of smell will miss out on the true experience of a hot Irish whiskey!

“Nothing is more memorable than a smell.” Diane Ackerman

Today’s post is also part of #WQW over on alwayswriteblog.Topic: 5 Senses.

Lucy’s drawing today is of an old style Guinness bottle.

8 thoughts on “The Way Mammy Used to Make it #100DaysOfOldDays

  1. Great recipes 😁👍🏽 You’re making us hungry and thirsty 😂. I think making them all with love is definitely the best ingredient 🥰❤️🥰 Gods wholesome winter food ….
    Love your descriptions and Lucy’s drawings are just perfect 👏🏽👏🏽👏🏽

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Fabulous and so timely. I hate to admit it but if you read my blog the other day, I bought Irish Stew from Costco. My friend bought soda bread. We didn’t have whiskey but we did have wine. It was a delicious meal. Your Irish ideas sound amazing. My mom used to make what she called Bubbles and Squeak. I think it was cabbage and potatoes. I can’t remember exactly but I’m sure of the cabbage. Thanks for joining in with WQW, Gloria. It was a blast, wasn’t it? I love your 100 days theme going on here. What a lot of work!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: WQW #40: St. Patrick’s Day Green – Marsha Ingrao – Always Write

  4. I h ad to look up what Boxty was…I love potato pancakes, which seems like that is what they are? I almost tried making some soda bread last week with dinner, but I was babysitting grandkids and didn’t have the energy. I’ve never had colcannon but I think I’d really like it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Kirstin. Yes, colcannon is quite tasty and nutritious.
      Boxty is a little different to potato pancakes/potato bread. When making boxty, the potatoes are not cooked when adding to the mixture. Whereas they are with potato pancakes. It means the texture is slightly different. Both are nice.
      Hope you get to make that Soda Bread! Thanks for reading and commenting. 🙂


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