Gourmet Recipes for One is a resource of simple, delicious recipes that focus on cooking for one. Single-serving recipes are featured as well as ideas and inspiration for achieving a well-balanced lifestyle.

celebrating St. Patrick’s Day.

There is something really nice about making something traditional to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. My day almost always starts with a piece (or two) of homemade irish soda bread. I’ve made many versions of this over the years but this is the one I like the best. This version is made with equal parts of whole-wheat and regular flour to make it a bit more healthy but it still has all the same flavors of a more traditional version, and it’s a great way to start your day. After that, here are a few other favorite recipes to finish off the day’s food celebration: colcannon, potato cakes, individual shepherd’s pie, beef and guinness stew, reuben pizza and shortbread as well as a new recipe for chocolate stout cake:

chocolate stout cake | photo by: Karen Covey

chocolate stout cake

This recipe was adapted from Fine Cooking.

1 stick plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature, divided
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, plus extra for dusting
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons stout (Guinness)
2 1/2 tablespoons molasses
3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten

Stout Cream
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup stout beer (Guinness)
2 tablespoons sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a loaf pan with 1 tablespoon butter and lightly dust with cocoa powder, shaking off excess. Set aside.
2. In a small saucepan, combine stout and molasses and bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
4. Using a stand mixer with paddle attachment (or hand mixer), cream butter on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add brown sugar and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Add about 1 1/2 eggs (discard extra egg) and mix until combined.
5. Add 1/3 of flour mixture and mix until combined, followed by 1/2 of cooled stout. Add another 1/3 of flour and mix until combined, followed by remaining cooled stout. Add remaining 1/3 flour mixture and mix until just combined. Scrape bowl and then beat at medium speed until batter is smooth, about 20 seconds. Transfer mixture to prepared loaf pan and run a knife through batter to eliminate any air pockets. Bake for about 30 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean (cover after 20 minutes with aluminum foil if top is getting too brown). Allow to cool completely.
6. Meanwhile, using a hand mixer, beat cream, stout and sugar until medium peaks form. Serve with cooled cake.

Makes 1 loaf.

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