Tuesday, March 16, 2010


For each petal on the shamrock
This brings a wish your way -
Good health, good luck, and happiness
For today and every day.

(Irish Blessing)

( Oxalis regnellii)

(adapted from Dec. 3, 2008 New York Times)

1 cup room temperature unsalted butter
(additional butter for greasing pan)
2 cups all purpose flour (additional for dusting pan)
5 oz. unsweetened chocolate
1/4 instant espresso powder
2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup Irish whiskey (other whiskey, bourbon or rye - additional for sprinkling)
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. baking soda
Confectioners' sugar for garnish
fresh mint sprigs

  • Preheat oven to 325º. Grease and flour a 10 cup capacity Bundt pan or two 8-9 inch loaf pans. Melt chocolate in double boiler over simmering water or in microwave. Let cool.
  • Add espresso and cocoa powders in large glass measuring cup. Add enough boiling water to come up to the 1 cup measuring line. Mix until powders dissolve. Add whiskey and salt; let cool.
  • Beat 1 cup butter with electric mixer until fluffy. Add sugar and beat until well combined. Beat in eggs, one at at time, beating well between each addition. Beat in vanilla, baking soda and melted chocolate, scraping down sides of bowl with a rubber spatula.
  • On low speed, beat in a third of the whiskey mixture. When liquid is absorbed, beat in 1 cup flour. Repeat additions, ending with whiskey mixture. Scrape batter into prepared pan and smooth top. Bake until cake tester inserted into center of cake comes our clean, about 1 hour 10 minutes for Bundt pan (loaf pans will take less time, start checking after 55 minutes.)
  • Transfer cake to a rack. Unmold after 15 minutes and sprinkle warm cake with more whiskey. Let cool before serving. Garnish with confectioners' sugar and sprigs of mint. (10-12 servings)

~ a healthy jigger of Brandy
(Brian's claim to smoothness instead of Irish whiskey)
freshly brewed rich black coffee
1 healthy tsp. brown sugar
1 healthy jigger Brandy (or Irish whiskey)
fresh whipping cream
1 Tbsp. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
freshly grated nutmeg, chocolate, or cinnamon

  • In chilled bowl, whip cream until soft peaks form. Add powdered sugar & vanilla. Continue whipping until medium-firm peaks forms.
  • Warm Irish coffee glass in hot water. Wipe dry. Pour brandy (or Irish whiskey) & brown sugar into the glass and stir. Slowly pour fresh coffee filling the glass to within half an inch or so from top of glass. Carefully top with whipped cream. Garnish with grated fresh nutmeg, chocolate shavings or cinnamon.

Important Note: Toast loved ones while sipping through the rich cream.

(In Memory: Thanks Brian!)


"Only Irish coffee provides in a single glass all four essential food groups: alcohol, caffeine, sugar and fat."

~ Alex Levin


Anonymous said...

Dear Joey, As I am sure you will imagine, it is straight from here for me and into the kitchen and that cake will be on the table within the hour!! I shall steer clear of the Irish coffee until after the cake is in the oven. Pigs may yet fly!

The collage of tiny Oxalis plants is lovely.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

We'll be dancing the irish jig after that combination! Thanks for the great recipe.


Tatyana@MySecretGarden said...

Joey, when will they invent computers which will allow us to taste your creations?!

Stone Art's Blog said...

Wishing you a happy Paddy's Day, from Ireland. Sunny

lindalou said...

Your picture of the shamrock blossom reminded me that I have a shamrock plant on my desk at work. They sold them about 4 or 5 years ago to raise money for something and I just can't believe that it's still flourishing.

I have my camera at work, so I'm going to grab a photo that I can post tomorrow. Thanks for the great idea.

Unknown said...


Victoria said...

HI Joey..this cake sounds divine..and what a beautiful Irish Blessing..gorgeous!
Blessings to you!

joey said...

Edith, you are such a dear! I so enjoy your wisdom and humor. Wish you were near and we could toast together!

Indeed, Eileen. Now, wouldn't that be fun! I include this Irish Coffee recipe every St. Patrick's Day in honor of a dear friend, Brian, who died way too young, and first introduced me to this memorable drink.

How sweet, Tatyana. What a great idea ... the way tech is exploding, it probably won't be long before we at least have 'smellavision'.

And Happy St. Paddy's to you, Stone Art, and thanks for visitng! Just returned from your amazing site ... fell in love with the living chair and want one ... NOW :)

They last forever, Lindalou. I have several that are umpteen years old. Go grab your camera and share!
(I'm still chuckling returning from your post and the fun comments).

Indeed it is, Michelle! Hey look at the temp ... currently 61º. The entire state is coming down with a huge case of 'Spring Fever'!

And blessings to you, dear Kiki! St. Paddy's Day is a fun day to reflect ... the only one in my family not Irish, I probably enjoy it the most!

imac said...

Tis a happy day - when reading your blog, full of Goodies.

Shady Gardener said...

We can count on you to beguile our tastebuds, can't we? :-) Do you celebrate St. Patrick's Day? Now that I'm not around a room full of children anymore, I often forget to wear green! ha.

beckie said...

Joey, I was NOT going to look at the cake recipe...but couldn't resist. :) Sounds divine!

I love the shamrock-there were several plantings of them at the flower show. There were 2 varieties, the one green leaves and one with burgandy. Very pretty both of them especially used in a border. Happy St. Pat's Day to you and may the luck of the Irish be with you.

joey said...

Thanks iMac ... 'tis a happy day reading your blog :)

Thanks dear Shady. The kids have moved away from home but thankful all live close and always return. Tomorrow is celebrating with daughter and friends, a 'green' supper! Sure to be fun :)

Hello, dear Beckie. Ok to look ... I'll take a bite and think of you :) I have both green/burgundy ... this plant is very forgiving and seems to last forever. I vacation mine outside in summer and drag them back into reality when the temps dive. They seem to love their insecure life and thrive :0) And may the luck of the Irish be with you also, dear friend!

Curbstone Valley Farm said...

The oxalis are beautiful...but now I'm craving chocolate cake and Irish coffee...and I haven't even had dinner yet! I think I have all the ingredients on hand for the cake...sooo tempting...

Kala said...

Have a happy St. P's day!

donna said...

Cake recipe -- "On low speed, beat in a third of the whiskey mixture."
That's assuming I didn't consume the whiskey mixture before getting to this step:)

This is the first time in many years that I've been without a shamrock plant on St. Patrick's Day. I'll be content looking at your shamrock bloom photo. Nice!


joey said...

Hope you can round all ingredients up, Curbstone Valley Farm. Both are very easy. Happy St. Paddy's Day!

... and a Happy St. Paddy's Day to you, Kala!

Hi Donna ... aw, yes, it's fun to lick your fingers and scrape the bowl. Enjoy this fun St. Patrick's Day!

Monica the Garden Faerie said...

Mmm... the cake sounds heavenly! But instead of coffee I'll be having me a Guinness! :)

Roses and Lilacs said...

Happy St Patrick's Day to you Joey. That Irish coffee sounds so good. I've never tried coffee with brown sugar.

Have a wonderful day!

joey said...

Enjoy the Guinness, Monica, and have a wonderful day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day, Marnie! So enjoyed your post and colorful tale :)

Gail said...

Wowzer what a recipe! Happy St Pat's day to you! I forgot it was a holiday and just whined on my post! gail

Anonymous said...

Superb, dear Joey! I love the tip about the brandy too. This would be such a treat when the need for chocolate arises. I imagine it might improve with age, just a little? :)

Unknown said...

Joey, the shamrock pictures are spectacular. So soft and romantic and sweet. Thank you for sharing! :o)

joey said...

It's OK to whine, Gail, it gets the whining out! Happy St. Paddy's Day ... do hope your day was as wonderful as mine (sat outside for appetizers then enjoyed a 'green dinner' on the sun porch ... all was not perfect since I noticed my windows need washing, big time!)

Right on, Frances. This dessert does improve with age (if it lasts). Hope you day was delightful!

Thanks Krista ... I just returned visiting your site and am most impressed with your shared list. You are blessed!

Rick said...

Lovely picture of the shamrock! And I just had to have that Irish coffee recipe. A bit late with my comment, but here's an Irish blessing for you:

May the road rise up to meet you,
may the wind be always at your back,
may the sun shine warm upon your face,
and the rains fall soft upon your fields;
may you always be held in the warmth of God's hand.

joey said...

Thank you, Rick. That blessing is my favorite! Hope you enjoyed the coffee ... it's hard not to :)