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Desserts 2 Click here for Desserts 1 Click here for Desserts 3 (Next) A pre-Lenten decadent dessert by Bridget Haggerty

In the old days, Shrove Tuesday was when Irish families used up all of their eggs, butter and other dairy products in anticipation of abstaining from these foods for the Lenten season. Hearkening back to these old ways, many of us who are Roman Catholic still practise giving up something for Lent; when we were children, it might have been sweets. As adults, it's more likely to be our favorite libation or, saints preserved, chocolate! For one last indulgence before the weeks of austerity set in, we found a recipe that incorporates all of the traditional forbidden foods, as well as two contemporary favorites - Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur and chocolate chips! Baileys Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Adapted from a recipe on Food Ireland; it is also attributed to a Chef Dean Fearing whose very similar recipe appeared in Bon Appetit. Ingredients: Crust Non-stick vegetable oil spray 2 cups crushed McVities digestives* 1/4 cup sugar 6 tablespoons Irish butter* melted Filling 2 1/4 pounds cream cheese, room temperature 1 2/3 cups sugar 5 eggs, room temperature 1 cup Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips Topping 1 cup chilled whipping cream 2 tablespoons sugar 1 teaspoon instant coffee powder Garnish Chocolate curls or shavings

Method: 1. Pre heat oven to 325 degrees 2. Coat 9-inch diameter spring-form pan with non-stick vegetable oil spray 3. Combine digestives and sugar in pan; stir in the butter 4. Press the mixture into the bottom and 1 inch up sides of pan Bake until light brown about 5 minutes. Remove from oven (keep oven turned on to 325 degrees) 5. Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth 6. Gradually mix in sugar, then beat in eggs 1 at a time. Add Baileys and vanilla 7. Sprinkle half of chocolate chips over crust 8. Spoon filling into crust; sprinkle with remaining chocolate chips 9. Bake until puffed, springy in the center and golden brown - about 1 hour and 20 minutes. Cool completely 10. Beat cream, sugar and coffee powder until peaks form; spread mixture over top and sides of cooled cake. Garnish with chocolate curls or shavingsfrom a bitter-sweet chocolate bar. Refrigerate until serving time. Refrigerate any leftovers. *McVities Digestives are available from The Irish Food Shoppe Irish butter is available from Food Ireland Image: Irish cheesecake: A Cook's Wares Strawberry Scones In reviewing our recipe index, we were surprised at the absence of an Irish tea-time favorite - scones! So, to make amends, here is an easy recipe adapted from the "Hen Party" menu in Bridget's Traditional Irish Wedding book. Ingredients: 1 cup strawberries 2 1/3 cups of flour 3 tablespoons sugar 2 teaspoons baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt 6 tablespoons Irish Butter* 2/3 cup milk Method: Preheat oven to 425F 1. Cut strawberries in 1/2 inch pieces and set aside 2. In large bowl, sift the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt 3. Add butter. With pastry blender or two knives, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs 4. Stir in reserved strawberries and toss well to coat

5. Add milk all at once. With a fork, lightly toss until mixture holds together 6. With floured hands, gently form into a ball. Gently roll out dough on floured board until 1/2 inch thick 7. Cut into two-and-a-half-inch circles with floured cookie cutter or upside down plastic tumbler 8. Place on greased cookie sheet and bake until golden - about 12 minutes. Serve warm with either strawberry preserves and/or whipped cream *Real Irish butter and a wide variety of other food products from Ireland are available fromFood Ireland Image: Food Ireland Michaelmas Pie Contributed by Aideen We spent a great deal of time looking for a recipe, but while many mentions of Michaelmas Pie can be found on the internet and in cook books - especially in reference to the Irish custom of hiding a ring in it - we've yet to find a source that lists the ingredients. Is it savory or is it sweet? Determined to to solve the mystery, we asked our resident Irish speaker, Aideen, if she knew. She belongs to an internet recipe exchange club and gave them the challenge; but even this group of foodie fanatics was unable to come up with a definitive answer. Reading through all of the information about Michaelmas day and the traditions associated with it - eating goose, for example, as well as carrots in some of the Celtic nations, we agree with Aideen's suggestion that the Michaelmas meal would most likely have ended with pie for dessert. And, since blackberries and apples are plentiful this time of year, we think it's just as likely the Michaelmas Pie would have been made with these ingredients. There's another reason we believe blackberries would have been an ingredient. According to old folklore, at Michaelmas, the devil spits on the blackberries (or worse!), so it's considered ill-advised to eat them after September 29th. If you happen to live where blackberries grow wild, why not take advantage of their abundance at this time of year and gather as many as you can for making crumbles, jam....and Michaelmas Pie! Go raibth maith agat Aideen! Ingredients: 12 oz plain flour, sifted 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon 3 oz white vegetable fat or lard

3 oz chilled butter, diced 3 fl oz chilled water pinch salt 2 lbs cooking apples 2 oz sugar 1 tsp ground cloves 1 tsp ground nutmeg 12 oz) blackberries 1 egg, beaten Method: Pre-heat the oven to 180 C, 350 F, Gas 4. 1. Prepare the pastry. Place the flour in a large bowl and stir in the cinnamon and salt. Rub in the butter and white fat with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Make a well in the centre and add the chilled water. Bring the mixture together using a round bladed knife. Once it has come together, knead for a brief moment and place in a plastic bag in the fridge. Leave to rest for 30 minutes. 2. Peel and core the apples. Cut them into large chunks and place them in a saucepan with the sugar, cloves and nutmeg. Cover with a lid and gently cook for 5 minutes, until the apples have softened. Fold in the blackberries and remove the saucepan from the heat. Cool completely. 3. Remove the pastry from the fridge and roll out two thirds on a lightly floured surface. Line an 8-inch metal pie plate. Prick the base of the pastry with a fork. Strain the fruit, reserving the juices and spoon the fruit mixture over. Roll out the remaining pastry. Lay the pastry over the fruit. Lift back the edge and brush the base with a little egg and seal the edge. Trim and crimp the pastry edges. Brush the surface with the remaining egg and make a couple of slits in the top. Scatter a little more sugar over the pastry and bake for 35 minutes. Serve hot or cold with ice cream or fresh double (whipping) cream. Image: Blackberry by Petula Stone from All Posters Photos & Prints Irish Rhubarb Crumble A luscious concoction, simple and homey, from The Abbey in Clonmel. Ingredients: 14 oz. unbleached white flour 14 oz. brown sugar 6 oz. butter, cut into bits 1 lb. rhubarb, cut into small pieces 2 1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice

1/2 tsp. grated lemon rind 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 tsp cinnamon pinch cloves Method: Combine flour and brown sugar in mixing bowl. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Place rhubarb in bottom of 9" pie plate, sprinkle lemon juice and rind over top, along with sugar and spices. Pile the crumble mixture on top of fruit, pressing down so that fruit is covered. Bake in a 300 deg. F. oven for 20 minutes or until top is golden and filling begins to bubble around edges. May be served hot or cold with a dollop of cream. Curach Contributed by our resident Irish speaker, Aideen Recently, a reader asked us if we could determine the meaning of the name of a restaurant in Galway called An Churach. Aideen is just back from a trip home to see her family and while she was there she did some investigating. "I consulted several more knowledgeable Irish-speakers than I and dictionaries were perused - all to no avail. The word, with that spelling, does not seem to exist. In desperation, I called the restaurant and spoke to an Assistant Manager who told me that it is just "a different spelling of Currach." I know it's not but I couldn't argue with him and hope to win! I suspect there are so many places in Galway with the name 'Currach' that they thought it would stand out when spelt that way! Co-incidentally, while I was over last week, the Irish Times was running a promotion for a 25% discount at many of the leading, expensive restaurants in Ireland and An Curach was one of them, so it must be a classy place." Call it serendipity, but when we asked Aideen for the translation, she had just come across the following recipe. Apparently, there's a very similar dish in Scotland called "Cranachan" (without the rhubarb) - and we don't know what that means either! But we do know that fresh rhubarb is back in season and what better way to serve it than in this elegant dessert! Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups oatmeal 1 cup chopped rhubarb 2 cups raspberries 3 tablespoons honey 2 cups whipping cream (heavy cream) 4 tablespoons whiskey Method:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spread the oatmeal out on a baking tray (cookie sheet) and bake until golden brown, approx 15 minutes, stirring frequently. In a medium saucepan, add the rhubarb and half of the raspberries with 2 tablespoons honey. Cook gently over a medium heat until the rhubarb is tender but not mushy. Cool. In a large bowl whip the cream until stiff. Fold in the remaining honey and whiskey. Layer in a trifle bowl or individual glasses some of the cream mixture, some toasted oatmeal, the rhubarb mixture, and some fresh raspberries. Then repeat. Garnish with fresh raspberries and mint leaves if desired. Serve at room temperature or chilled. Serves 6 Images: Rhubarb by Jennifer Kennard from Barewalls Photos & Prints An Churach Restaurant, 3 Daly Place, Woodquay, Galway, Ireland Desserts 2 Click here for Desserts 1 (Previous) Click here for Desserts 3 (Next) Any purchase made helps to support our site (and Bridget's fondness for tea towels). Thank you. Desserts 3 Click here for Desserts 2 (Previous) Summery Flummery Edited and adapted by Bridget Haggerty Flummery is mentioned in many ancient monastic manuscripts including a translation of "The Rule of Tallaght". The ingredients varied but the basis was always soaked oats, the liquid from which sets to a clear jelly. This was often flavoured with rosewater and topped with cream and honey, with or without alcohol. Berries might also have been included, if available. Most of the Celtic nations have a version of this dessert and the world itself is from the Welsh Cymric llymru, which means a soft, oatmeal food. While he traditional Irish version is most often a cooked, cold dessert made from oatmeal, this recipe adapted from

Classic Irish Recipes by Georgina campbell doesnt require cooking - but, its still very rich and includes ingredients that were traditional in the old irish kitchen, including almonds which were very popular in the 18th century. So here you are then - a summery flummery, or sweet pudding, which would round out an Irish farmhouse dinner perfectly. Ingredients: 1/3 cup almonds 2 ounces McCanns Irish Oatmeal 1 cup heavy cream 3 to 4 tablespoons honey (to taste) 1/4 cup Irish Whiskey or irish Mist Liqueur Juice of half a lemon 1 to 2 cups raspberries Method: 1. Heat the almonds and oatmeal in a heavy-bottomed pan until golden brown; set aside. 2. Whip the cream until its smooth but not stiff. 3. Warm the honey slightly so that it runs easily. 4. Fold the honey, whiskey (or Irish Mist), half of the toasted almonds and oatmeal, half the raspberries and lemon juice into the cream. 5. Mix lightly but thoroughly and put the mixture into tall individual glasses. 6. Sprinkle remaining almonds, oatmeal and raspberries over the top of each serving. Chill Makes 4 to 6 servings Irish Fraughan Sunday Cake with Fraughan Cream Contributed by Hartson Dowd Fraughans, herts or bilberries are the names used in different parts of Ireland for the intensely flavored wild blueberries that grow on the acid hilltop soil. The 'Huckleberry' of North America is the equivalent of the European bilberry - the name being a corruption of 'Whortleberry.' If you live in North America, there are about 40 native species of huckleberries, but in some parts of the United States the name "huckleberry" is improperly used for both blueberries and true huckleberries. Other people mistakenly believe that blueberries always have blue or bluish fruit, and that all huckleberries are black or purplish black. However, there are dark-colored blueberries, and huckleberries that are distinctly blue, but there is a sure way to tell one from the other: blueberries have a large number of tiny soft seeds, whereas the huckleberries have 10 rather large, bony seeds. Huckleberries would be an appropriate substitute in the following recipes; however, in the absence of bilberries or huckleberries, tart, fresh blueberries should work just as well. Ingredients:

Fraughan Cake 8-oz self-rising flour 6-oz granulated sugar 6-oz butter 4-oz fraughans 2 eggs, beaten 3 tbsp milk Fraughan Cream 6fl-oz whipping cream 2-oz fraughans 1 tbsp granulated sugar Method: Pre-heat oven to 350F Butter a 7-inch round cake tin. Cream together the butter, sugar, until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs, adding 1 tablespoon of flour with the last of the eggs. Sift the remaining flour and fold in, adding enough milk to produce a stiff mixture. Gently stir in the fraughans, ensuring they are evenly distributed through the mixture. In a bowl, cream the sugar and butter and beat the eggs in one at a time. Transfer to the prepared tin. Bake for 1 hour. Remove from the tin. Allow to cool on a rack for 1-2 hours before serving. Fraughan Cream Place the fraughans in a bowl and mash into a juicy pulp. In a separate bowl whip the cream and sugar until stiff; fold in the fraughan pulp. Chill before serving. Serve a slice of cake accompanied with a portion of the cream. Image: Bilberries by Alie Kruse-Kolk; Art Print from AllPosters October Cobbler Contributed by Hartson Dowd In the old days, it was thought that Michaelmas (September 29) was the last day on which brambles or blackberries were worth picking. Even now, many rural folk refuse to to collect wild brambles after this day because tradition says it was when the devil was kicked out of heaven and as he fell from the skies, he landed in a bramble bush. He cursed the fruit of that prickly plant, scorching them with his fiery breath, stamping on them, spitting on them and generally making them unsuitable for human consumption. Whether or not you belive in this old myth, it is true that wild brambles are past their prime by the end of September. But, the careful Irish wife and mother would have sent the children brambling long before hand and accumulated a bountiful supply of berries for jams, preserves, and desserts.

This traditional Irish dessert is made with your choice of fruits augmented with tart apples. Serve hot with whipped cream. Makes 4 servings. Ingredients: Pastry for a one-crust pie 1 pound fruit (your choice) prepared and washed 2 medium-sized, tart cooking apples, cored and chopped 3 tablespoons water 1/3 cup (2 oz.) soft brown sugar Grated rind of 1 small orange 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 2 teaspoons arrowroot dissolved in 1 tablespoon orange juice 1 egg yolk and 1 tablespoon mil mixed together Method: Make the pastry and shape dough into a ball; wrap it in waxed paper and chill in fridge for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, make the filling. Place the chosen fruit and the apple, water, sugar, orange rind and cinnamon in a medium-sized saucepan. Set the pan over moderately high heat and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low, cover pan and simmer, stirring occasionally for 6 to 8 minutes or until the fruit is tender. Stir in the dissolved arrowroot and cook the mixture, stirring constantly for 3 minutes or until the liquid has thickened. Remove the pan from the heat. Spoon the fruit mixture into a medium-sized pie dish. Set aside. Preheat oven to 400F. Remove dough from refrigerator and place it on a lightly floured board. With a floured rolling pin, roll out the dough into a circle about a 1/4 inch thick. Using a 2-inch round fluted pastry cutter, cut dough into circles. Gather the remaining dough into a ball and knead lightly until it is smooth. Roll the dough into a strip about 1/8 inch thick. With a sharp knife, trim dough strip to make it 1/4 inch wide. Wet the rim of the pie dish with a little cold water. Place dough strip on the rim of the dish to cover it completely. Trim off any excess dough with a sharp knife and press the ends of the strip together to seal them. Place the dough circles over the dough strip, pressing them down lightly. The circles should overlap slightly, forming a border around the pie, leaving a gap in the middle to expose the filling. Lightly prick the circles with a fork and brush them with the egg yolk and milk mixture.

Sprinkle over the remaining tablespoon of sugar. Place the cobbler in the center of the oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the mixture is golden brown. Remove cobbler from oven and serve immediately straight from the dish. Image: Blackberries by Richard Boyer from AllPosters and Prints. Connemara Apple Tart Edited and adapted from a a recipe published by George Steeler in the Irish Heritage newsletter. If you would like to subscribe, send George an email: In the old days, after the crops had been built into stacks, dried out and then brought into the haggard, it was time for the threshing. Entire communities would come together to help each other out and farmer's wives would vie with each other to produce the best feed for the menfolk. Topping off the main course would be apple or rhubarb tart served with big mugs of hot sweet tea. Ingredients: 1 cup self rising flour 1/4 cup sugar 2 large apples - Granny Smith, Bramley or other green cooking apple 1 beaten Egg 2 ounces butter 1/4 cup milk pinch of salt 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger Topping: 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg. Method: Sift flour, ginger, salt and sugar. Rub in the fat. Add milk and eggs to bake a soft dough. Roll out on a floured board. Cover the base of a greased pie dish with the pastry. Grate the apples onto the pastry. Dot with butter. Sprinkle cinnamon and nutmeg over top. Bake in a moderate oven for 1/2 hour. Serve hot with custard.* If you'd like to make your custard from scratch, we have a recipe here: Irish Mist Trifle. Image: Apple Tart art print by Karyl Shields from All-Posters Nuns Cake Contributed by Hartson Dowd

Everyone should believe in something. I believe I will have another slice.** Is this cake so heavenly that it's habit-forming? All puns intended, we think it might be! Is it Irish? If it's from Hartson's Irish-born grandmother, it's Irish enough for us. This recipe found in my Gramma's Recipe File must be a very old one; its pages show a lot of wear and tear. I have not sent it before as it calls for Rose Water Flavoring - an ingredient that may not be readily available.* A friend in Ireland suggests that a teaspoon of vanilla flavoring may be substituted for the rose water. Ingredients: 1 cup butter or butter substitute 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar 1/4 tsp. salt 5 egg yolks tsp. caraway seed 2 egg whites 2 tsp. rose water flavoring 3/4 cup milk 1/2 tsp. cinnamon flavoring 3 cups cake flour Method: Cream butter or butter substitute. Add sugar and yolks of eggs. Beat thoroughly. Stir in unbeaten whites of eggs and beat mixture. Sift flour, measure, and sift with baking powder and salt. Add alternately with milk to first mixture. Sprinkle in caraway seed, beat well, and add flavorings. Pour into well-oiled loaf pan. Bake in moderate oven (375 degrees) for one hour. ED. NOTE: Rosewater was first prepared as long ago as the tenth century. Following a tradition that dates back to ancient times, people applied rose water to a cloth to create a compress, and used it as a mild astringent for treating bruises and headaches. It is still made today by the Shakers, who use it to relieve sunburned, chapped, or dried skin. It is also a favored ingredient in Persian cuisine. It subtly enhances the flavor when added to jams, honey, even ice cream. Rose water was also a popular flavoring for apple pie and other baked goods. (As in Nun's Cake!). We went up on the internet and you can find this rather exotic flavoring at the following URLs: Baker's Catalog Stony Mountain Botanicals Bazaar Image: Happy Nun by Kristen Soderlind. Note Card from All Posters ** Quote edited and adapted from one attributed to W. C. Fields who supposedly said "Everybody should believe in something -I believe I'll have another drink." Source: Tasty Brew

Rhubarb Nut Crunch Contributed by Hartson Dowd and edited by Bridget Haggerty This recipe came in from Hartson right before Mother's day, a time when my thoughts dwell with great fondness on my own mother. In the kitchen, she was an old world cook from Dublin who could make magic with meat and potatoes and create a delectable dessert from a bunch of rhubarb. It seemed appropriate to honour her memory with this contemporary version of a classic fruit crunch. My mother - and my dad -would have loved it! The Crunch Bit: 1 lb Rhubarb; (about 5 cups) 1 1/4 cup Sugar, granulated 1/2 cup Flour 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon, ground 3/4 cup Orange juice The Topping: 1/2 cup Flour 1/2 cup Oatmeal 1 cup Sugar, brown 1/3 cup Butter; room temperature 1/2 cup Hazelnuts; coarsely chopped (2 ounces) Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream The Method: 1. Heat oven to 350 F 2. Generously grease, or coat with non-stick cooking spray, an 8x12x2 glass baking dish 3. Cut rhubarb in 1-inch chunks and place in prepared baking dish 4. Sprinkle with sugar, flour and cinnamon 5. Toss to evenly coat 6. Pour orange juice over mixture 7. In medium bowl, combine flour, oatmeal and brown sugar 8. With pastry blender cut in butter until it becomes like coarse meal 9. Spread evenly over rhubarb 10. Sprinkle hazelnuts on top 11. Bake at 350 F. in the center of the lower third of the oven until the rhubarb is tender and the mixture is bubbling, about 35 to 40 minutes 12. Cool to lukewarm and serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. Image Credit: Rhumble Nut Crunch Irish Coffee Cheesecake Contributed by Hartson Dowd

Its a cheesecake with "blarney". A creamy, thick sweet cheesecake on a sweet cocoa crust! Ingredients: For the Crust: 16 tbsp. (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces 1/2 cup granulated sugar 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup rice flour 1/2 cup cocoa powder Large pinch of salt For the Cheesecake: 1 1/2 lb. (three 8 oz. packages) cream cheese, at room temperature 1 cup granulated sugar 4 eggs 1 lb. sour cream 1/3 cup Irish Whiskey or Irish cream liqueur 2 tbsp. instant espresso powder For the Caramel Glaze: (Optional) 1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar 2 tbsp. Irish Whiskey or Bailey's Irish Cream, (optional) 8 tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter 1/4 cup heavy cream Garnish: (Optional) Cocoa powder for dusting Whipped Cream Ready made store-bought chocolate syrup Method: To make the crust: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, combine the butter, granulated sugar, all-purpose flour, rice flour, cocoa powder and salt. Mix on low speed until the dough comes together. Roll out the dough into a 9-inch round. Pat the dough into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or as long as overnight. Preheat an oven to 300F (150 degrees C) Bake the crust for 30 minutes. Let cool completely. To make the cheesecake: Have a pot of hot water ready. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until smooth. Add the granulated sugar and beat until smooth. Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the sour

cream, the espresso powder, the Irish whiskey (or Irish cream liqueur, if using), and mix until smooth. Spread the batter evenly over the crust. Place the springform pan in a large roasting or baking pan, then place on the oven rack. Carefully fill the roasting pan halfway with hot water. Bake for 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours. To test for doneness, gently shake the pan; the cheesecake should be set from the center to the edges but not dry. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 30 minutes, then refrigerate until chilled throughout, about 1 hour. To make the caramel glaze: In a small, heavy saucepan over low heat, combine the brown sugar, butter and cream. Heat until the sugar dissolves, then increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring constantly, until thick and smooth, add the Irish whiskey (or Bailey's Irish Cream, if using). Let cool to room temperature. When ready to serve, remove the cheesecake from the refrigerator and transfer to a large serving plate. Cut with a hot, dry knife. Caramel Glaze and Garnish: (Optional) Drizzle slices with the caramel glaze and chocolate syrup and dust slices with cocoa powder. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream. Serves 8 to 10. Desserts 3 Click here for Desserts 2 (Previous) Any purchase made helps to support our site (and Bridget's fondness for tea towels). Thank you. Irish Beverages Homemade Buttermilk In the old days, nothing went to waste in an Irish household and this included the liquid left over after churning the butter. Combined with natural airborne bacteria, the liquid thickened and soured, taking on a pleasingly tangy flavor. The resulting buttermilk made an excellent drink, especially in warm weather (although Michaleen O'Flynn in the Quiet Man would definitely disagree - "The Borgia's

would do better!"). Lower in fat than sweet milk, the flavor of buttermilk is reminiscent of yogurt and most people prefer it well-chilled. Irish folklore claims a glass of buttermilk will cure a hangover, and when heated with a clove of garlic, it was sure to cure any variety of ailments! While the days of churning butter at home may be long gone, the following recipe will make it easy for you to enjoy having fresh buttermilk on hand almost whenever you like. Ingredients: 1 oz yeast 1 oz sugar 4 pts water 1 pt milk Method: 1. Cream sugar and yeast 2. Warm the water slightly and mix with milk 3. Gradually stir milk and water until the milk smells like buttermilk - slightly sour but not unpleasant 4. Strain through muslin and use for bread and scone recipes calling for buttermilk, including: Jane FitzGerald's Blue Ribbon Soda Bread St. Brigid's Oatcakes Irish Soda Biscuits Recipe reprinted with the kind permission of Cailin Ni Meara Image: Co. Wicklow Note Card from All-Posters