Inspired Entertaining: A Stylish St. Patrick's Day Brunch


I don't know about you, but the typical green beer + pub crawl + shamrocks on everything style of celebrating St. Patrick's Day has never really been my thing.

But I LOVE Irish food--and any excuse for a party--so this year I decided to give St. Paddy's a bit of an Alejandra-style makeover with a little help from the folks at Kerrygold and Teleflora.

On Saturday afternoon, I invited a few good friends over for a stylish St. Patrick's Day brunch at home and photographed the day to share with you. Below is a collection of party inspiration, St. Patrick's Day recipes, and entertaining ideas for you to use when planning your own event!

How it works
  • Scroll down to view the photos and click through to check out the individual recipes (a couple are yet to be posted, but they'll be up shortly). 
  • If you click on any photo, you should be able to view them all "slideshow" style. 
This is part of a new editorial series here on Always Order Dessert, and I have several more like this in the works. Please let me know below if you enjoy it!

My Inspiration Board
Dress: Old Navy, Necklace: C. Wonder, Flatware: West Elm, Flowers: Teleflora, Dog sweater: Casual Canine
 


The Menu:
The idea for my St. Patrick's Day menu was all about modern twists on classic Irish recipes. My guests arrived to find a spread of sliced sharp Irish cheese, sweet Kerrygold pastured butter, and two kinds of homemade soda bread:
I offered two signature St. Patrick's Day cocktails for the event:
The latter is a refreshing muddled cocktail with fresh mint, cucumber, and limeade, which can be served on the rocks or in a large punch bowl for your guests to help themselves. It's a great, natural way to serve up a little green.

Colcannon--mashed potatoes with cream, butter and vegetables like kale or cabbage--is one of my favorite Irish dishes, and though typically served during Irish Halloween celebrations, I decided to use it to create a fun appetizer for my brunch. I fried little crisp colcannon cakes that I served topped with a dollop of yogurt and salty smoked salmon.

The main course for the day was a twist on the classic Irish Shepherd's Pie--Stuffed Shepherd's Pie Potatoes! I hollowed out baked potatoes and filled them with a savory ground lamb and veggie filling. I topped this off with buttery mashed potatoes and a sprinkle of grated cheese, then popped it under the broiler.

To balance out the heartiness of the dish, I served a simple arugula salad with a Mustard Vinaigrette dressing.

Recipes:
It should come as no surprise that I was most excited about dessert. I served two treats--the first a twist on my signature Italian Rainbow Cookies, which I appropriately called Irish Rainbow Cookies

Moist green rainbow almond cake layers with lemony apricot jam and dark chocolate on top. Sort of an extreme use of food coloring, but I think perfectly appropriate for the occasion!

Recipe: 

The second dessert is a version of my favorite no-bake pots de creme. I made these with dark chocolate and Guinness, and served them in little white espresso cups--a perfect sweet bite to end a rich meal!

Recipe:

St. Patrick's Day Decor
I kept the decorations simple with an elegant Irish color palate of kelly green, gold, and white.

Flowers are my favorite way to dress up a table, so I contacted the folks at Teleflora.com who sent over two of their best St. Patrick's Day themed floral arrangements--the Luck o' the Irish (pictured in the intro photo) and the St. Patrick's Day-zies, pictured below.

I love the way daisies make it suddenly feel sunny and Spring-like (even when it's 20 degrees and snowing outside!).

I asked my guests to come wearing green, and we even got Hudson in on the action with his own little matching sweater. After dessert, we sat around sipping our cocktails and playing a hysterical round of Celebrity, my favorite parlor game.


Floral arrangements courtesy of Teleflora.com. Kerrygold provided coupons for free Kerrygold butter and cheese samples. All opinions, recipes, and ideas are (of course!) my own.

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