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When Irish Eyes are Smiling


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So a few weeks ago we were watching Rocco's new show on A&E called Rocco Gets Real. I guess he has a new cookbook by the same name. One of the episodes was about a girl who wanted to make a birthday dinner for her Irish boyfriend. They start with a little background about the couple. Let's see. They've been together 9 months. And they've been living together for 3. Wait, what? Oh yeah...in Queens. This broad gave up her MANHATTAN APARTMENT to go live with her boyfriend of less than a year...in Queens. Yikes. So it's her boyfriend's birthday and she wants to learn how to make him Coddle which is also known as Irish Stew. Her reason is that he was talking about how only his dad will make it and that he misses his dad. She then states how she's surprising her man and flying his dad in for his birthday. Wow. Okay. Is it me or is this relationship super-intense? Since they haven't been together for even a year, this is the first time they're celebrating his birthday. More than likely it's not a big one (ie 30, 40, etc) because that would have been mentioned. Way to go all out for the first birthday together. How are you going to top this one genius? That's right. You're not. But for now you get to be on TV. And I get to watch Rocco cook. By the way, I think Rocco has TOTALLY redeemed himself from his younger days on "The Restaurant". He's charming, and yes he's still arrogant, but he knows what he's talking about.
So Rocco shows up and teaches her how to make coddle. Honestly, I really don't think she needs the help. She's not totally inept, but whatever. If she wasn't on TV I wouldn't have learned this recipe and I like it sooo...
Here's the recipe:

You have to watch the full episode, but pick the second clip because that has everything you need. The printed recipe isn't online yet. After writing down the recipe, I had to make some adjustments. First I halved the recipe. There's only 2 of us, no need to make enough for 6. Next, I couldn't find Irish sausage (bangers). This might have to do with the fact I read an article about Irish sausage being recalled. I don't know about you, but every time I hear the word "bangers" I totally think of Mrs. Featherbottom...Since I couldn't find Irish sausage, I went with Italian mild sausage.
Also, I couldn't find Irish bacon. I read that it's similar to Canadian bacon, but I couldn't find that either. So I just bought pancetta. So in reality, I made an Italian-Irish stew. Whatever. It was still scrumptious.
The final thing I changed was instead of using hard cider (a 6 pack was $12 and I wasn't going to drink the remaining 5) I used regular cider. Quite tasty.
Overall it was a very easy dish to make. I think it took 45 minutes to prep and get everything cooking and I let it simmer for 3 hours.

Oh and if you want to cry like I did, watch the third clip when the boyfriend's dad shows up.

(Scroll down a few posts for pictures from this dinner! I'm too lazy to repost them in this entry)