This Saturday is Saint Patrick’s Day, the Catholic feast day that celebrates the man who brought Christianity to Ireland. It has since evolved (or some might argue devolved) into a general celebration of the Irish culture. While I may no longer celebrate the holiday as boisterously as I did in college, I still plan on making whiskey glazed salmon with colcannon and enjoying a glass of Guinness (not ready for Guinness by itself, try Ruth’s Black Velvet) or Jameson (more likely a glass of each).
Every year I add a bit of whimsy to the celebration by making these cookies. The recipe isn’t really Irish at all, but the shamrock, a 3-leaved clover, is a popular symbol of Ireland, much like the thistle represents Scotland. Many people are familiar with the lore that St. Patrick used the shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity, but the clover was also sacred to the pre-Christian Irish for whom the number 3 was a sacred number representing the myriad of “Triple Goddesses” present in their religion.
So whip up a batch of these fun cookies, put in a movie (Darby O’Gill and the Little People is a particular favorite of mine. A young Sean Connery and leprechauns, yes please), and spend Sunday recovering from your hangover.
1) Beat butter, sugar, and honey until fluffly. Add egg. Mix in flour and ground clove. Add green food coloring until desired shade of green is reached.
2) Chill dough for about 30 minutes and preheat oven to 350°F.
3) Roll dough into half-inch balls, trying to keep them as uniform in size as possible. Arrange the dough into triangles, using three balls. Using a flat bottom glass, dip it in the clove-sugar and flatten the triangles to a quarter inch thickness.
6) Bake 10-12 minutes, until the center is just set.