What springs to mind when you hear ‘Irish snacks’? Devious pleasures in a dark corner of a café or simply nothing at all? Meat and two veg with icing sugar atop, perhaps.
It’s true that Irish sweets and stop-gaps are a class of creatures relatively unknown to the wider world. But, make no mistake, because oh we got them! America may be the true land of honey, but you’d be surprised how sweet its Atlantic neighbor can be, if rubbed the right way.
Big bars of candy banned most elsewhere on the planet, on account of their dangerously high levels of deliciousness. Slabs of caramelized empty calories that you whip out from under your desk when the boss isn’t looking. Literally heart-stopping slabs of chocolate and molasses. These are just some examples of top fill-the-gap Irish dishes.
The guilty pleasures of Irish snacks
What makes Irish snacks even more sumptuous is the devilish habit of the Irish to pretend they are perfectly healthy for you. The recipe for those same heart-stopping slabs of choc will have a few semi-naughties thrown in, like biscuits. To even out the exorbitant calories to weight ratio. There’s nourishment in there somewhere, just allow your decaying molars to gnaw through the layers of sugar first!
Either that or they’ve cut the flab completely and compressed the snack into bullet form. Hard-boiled sweets poured into your pocket because your elderly neighbor has been addicted to them for nine decades, wants to save her remaining tooth.
That’s just the nature of Irish snacks it seems. Centuries of Catholic guilt has meant you’re down to two options. Pretend you’re not deriving an unholy amount of pleasure from proceedings. Or pack all that lust for taste into chunks of pleasure, then fire them down your gob.
And original sin is making for ever more original ways to sin, the flagellation morphing into more and more methods of merciless immoderation. Snacks-cum-desserts-cum-Irish mixed drinks like the whiskied-up violet crumble shake mean a dual dose of penance and defiant pride. (“But ice cream tastes sooo good! What a true monstrosity I am…nom, nom, nom…Oh, great, there’s Irish alcohol in here to ease (and reinforce) the shame.”)
Direct direction of directly Irish dishes directive (delivered directly…albeit filtered through inherent Irish indirectness)
We could go on, but much better to just show you how to make your own. There’s no more fruitful experience than direct experience! It might also be pertinent, albeit rather foolish from a marketing standpoint, to highlight here that Ireland has one of the most rapidly rising levels of obesity worldwide.
In the Irish Snacks section, you’ll find all the aforesaid Irish mega snacks and more. So join us as we dive deep into the layer of glucose binding Irish cuisine together at the seams.
Once the treacle stops a-trickling and starts a-gushing, you’ll beg to be freed from it’s sticky mass. For now, perhaps set that sweet tooth of yours a-nibbling on a wedge of Irish apple cake, or a-dipping into the most traditional and easy strawberry mousse, made from nothing but honey, eggs and strawberries.
Praise for Irish Snacks and Desserts
My name does be Blathnaid and come this December twelve months I’ll be 108 and a 1/2 (years of age). I have come much, seen much and bought the (long-sleeved, parish-kosher) T-shirt many times over.
But though it’s many a day I’ve roamed a hundred miles or more, such deliciousness in a dessert dish have I never seen before.
Whether it be safely tucked up of an Easter Sundae or tethered to the twinkles of A Tart I Loved So Well, these recipes always get me singing out like the olden days. So dainty, so daring, they have me feeling like The Spanish Lady all over again. Toothless, sweet and delicious, just the game.
Much thanks, Irish Buzz, purveyors of old skool sugarkicks that never age.
Hit me up on InstaBlathnaid Mac Giolla Bháin, Sackville Street Dublin
(Corragunnagalliaghdoo Island, Co. Mayo native)