Today we welcome Pat McDermott to the fantastic line up of delicious recipes. Pat will send the winner of the drawing a copy of her newly released YA paranormal fantasy, Glancing through the Glimmer. Please leave your email address in your comment so we can contact you if you win. Thank you!...Now Pat, please tell us how you discovered this tasty dish.
One chilly autumn day, I found myself in a Dublin pub before a roaring peat fire with a glass of wine and a gorgeous bowl of Guinness Beef Stew. Alas, the cook wouldn't share the recipe!
When I returned to New Hampshire, I concocted a tasty stew on a par with the one I'd enjoyed in Ireland, and I'm happy to share the recipe. Sorry I can't offer a roaring peat fire!
GUINNESS BEEF STEW à la PAT
4 lbs. lean beef stew meat, trimmed
3 Tbs. vegetable oil
A dollop of bacon fat (optional but good)
5 Tbs. flour
One large vidalia onion, chopped fine
1½ lbs. sliced mushrooms, all white or mix of wild
4-5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can of fat-free beef broth
3 cans of Guinness Stout or Draught
3 tsps. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsps. dried thyme
A few bay leaves
1½ Tbs. brown sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a deep sauté pan, add bacon fat and brown the meat, sprinkling with flour as it cooks. Remove meat to large stew pot. Add onions and cook for a few minutes, then add the mushrooms and saute until they release their moisture and start to brown, adding minced garlic and sprinkling on any remaining flour. Add to meat mixture. Deglaze sauté pan with beef broth and add mixture to meat. Add Guinness slowly. Add remaining ingredients. Stir well and simmer, covered, for about two hours, or until meat is tender. Remove cover and simmer a bit longer to thicken sauce. Serve with mashed potatoes, favorite vegetables, and/or Irish soda bread. Serves six hungry people, and leftovers are great.
Blurb for Glancing Through the Glimmer:
In the modern Kingdom of Ireland, few mortals believe in the fairy folk. Without that belief, the fairies are dying. Finvarra, the King of the Fairies, would rather dance than worry—but he must have a mortal dancing partner.
When Janet Gleason’s grandfather becomes the new U.S. Ambassador to Ireland, the sixteen-year-old orphan must leave Boston and her friends behind. Janet is lonely in Dublin and unused to her grandparents’ stuffy social life. An invitation to a royal ball terrifies her. She can’t even waltz and dreads embarrassment. Finvarra’s fairy witch overhears her fervent wish to learn to dance.
Seventeen-year-old Prince Liam Boru loathes the idea of escorting another spoiled American girl to a ball. In fact, he detests most of his royal duties. He dresses down to move through Dublin unnoticed and finds himself on his royal backside when Janet crashes into him. Intrigued, he asks to see her again, and she willingly agrees. Unaware of each other’s identities, they arrange to meet. When they do, the fairies steal Janet away.
Liam’s attempts to find her trigger a series of frustrating misadventures. Can he and Janet outwit a treacherous fairy king who’s been hoodwinking mortals for centuries?
The first time Liam slipped and fell, he cursed the rain-damp grass. He blamed his second tumble on his haste to catch up with Janet. What on earth had possessed the girl to run off like that? She couldn’t possibly want to find music that badly.
Music only she could hear.
The third time he lost his balance, he’d swear someone had pushed him, but no one was there. He landed on his hands and knees and cursed again. He might not be a muscleman, but he was far from a clumsy dolt. A lifetime of sports and outdoor treks had surely left him fit enough to climb a scrubby little hillside.
Something strange was afoot.
I’m being ridiculous. The breeze must have kept him from hearing the music she heard. She’d likely gone after the owner of whatever was playing the tune to learn its name.
Yet the Nose of Howth seemed deserted. How odd for a sunny Sunday morning. Even if Janet had gone off seeking the source of the music, no amount of rationalizing could explain why she’d left so abruptly. The chilling sense that she was in danger had Liam’s heart thumping high in his throat.
Should he call his cousin? If Kevin was still on the pier, it would take him a while to get here. And practical Kevin would surely think Liam astray in the head.
Maybe he was, but something told him he had to find Janet, and fast. Keeping close to the ground as if he were dodging radar, he clambered monkey-like up the hill. This time he reached the top of the rise. Lumps in the landscape surrounded him, clumps of rock and rolling masses of heather and gorse that encircled the level spot where he stood. He knew the place well. Except for the curious lack of weekend hill walkers, nothing seemed amiss.
He listened hard. A seagull cried in the distance. Otherwise, all was silent. No, wait! Music drifted toward him, a plucky harp tune he might have enjoyed under different circumstances. Was that what Janet had heard?
Where was it? He turned in a circle, squinting in the sunlight, scanning, straining to hear. When he returned to the spot where he’d started, a jolt of fear set his pulse racing.
A round stone hut had appeared on the highest part of the clearing. Its low thatched roof rose to a ridiculously high point. It resembled a roundhouse, the sort of dwelling that belonged in a prehistoric ring fort.
Or a fairy fort.
Liam swallowed hard. He’d seen replicas of such huts in Ireland’s folk parks. He’d also viewed ruins of the original ring forts, all that remained of the structures built by the mysterious peoples who’d lived and died in Ireland thousands of years ago.
Where had this one come from? Why was it on the Nose of Howth? Liam had never seen it before, nor had he heard of any gimmicky tourism plans for the cliff walk. Of course, he didn’t know everything. Convincing himself that he’d failed to see the hut at first because the sun had blinded him, he ventured toward the structure.
He spotted a doorway and relaxed. Janet was there, speaking to a woman wearing a period costume, medieval or older. That’s what it was, he thought: tourism come to tarnish Howth. How could Uncle Peadar have allowed such nonsense?
Liam called Janet’s name again, but neither she nor the woman showed any sign that they’d heard him. The wind must have carried his voice away. He stalked toward the roundhouse. As he approached, the costumed woman placed a necklace over Janet’s head.
The roundhouse flickered, faded, and reappeared. Alarmed, Liam stopped. This was no tourist gimmick. As his thoughts scrambled for an explanation, the woman grabbed Janet’s arm and pulled her into the hut.
“Janet, no!” His ferocious roar proved useless. Unbelievably, the roundhouse began to dissolve. No longer doubting his horrified senses, he dove at the hut and charged through the disappearing door.
The world around him melted away.
Where can we find you on the Internet, Pat?
Where can we find you on the Internet, Pat?
My Web Site: http://www.patmcdermott.net
My Writing/Travel Blog (Put the Kettle On): http://pat-mcdermott.blogspot.
My Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/home.
Facebook page for Glancing Through the Glimmer: http://www.facebook.com/home.
My MuseItUp Author Page: http://museituppublishing.com/
musepub/index.php?option=com_ content&view=article&id=168& Itemid=82
Buy Link at Muse It Up Publishing
My cooking blog (Kitchen Excursions): http://kitchenexcursions.
Pat featured the FREE Good Eats, Great Reads Recipe Collection on the Kitchen Excursion's blog. Thanks, Pat! Please request this collection from Pat or me or any of the authors in the GEGR event.