St. Patrick's Day is approaching and if you ask us, it couldn't come sooner. We know there is some lore for this holiday about how St. Patrick chased all the snakes out of Ireland and this day is dedicated to celebrating Irish pride, but we can't seem to shake the idea that this would be the perfect time to throw a fabulous green-themed dessert party for our friends.
For our party we wanted to do something special; a Make Your Own Irish Cream Bar, complete with lots of mix-in options and homemade Irish cream. Bailey's has been a staple for Irish creams but this year we're making our own because it's too easy to make and such an upgrade from the overly sweet mix that Bailey's has to offer. Irish cream has always been a favorite cold-weather indulgence, in or outside coffee, so making a few extra batches seems like a great idea to have on hand during this never ending winter.
We used Smitten Kitchen's recipe for Irish cream, one batch makes about 3 3/4 cups or 30 fluid ounces so if you're making for your St. Patty's Day Dessert Party we suggest double or tripling the recipe. The classic Irish whiskey to use is Jameson but if you have your own favorite whiskey by all means feel free to use that one. For those not looking to party like the Irish on St Patty's Day, we like to have a pot of coffee made to splash your Irish cream in.
For the drink bar, we like to have lots of options for our guests to enjoy their Irish creams. Our table will include jars of instant espresso or coffee powder for adding coffee flavors, chocolate sauce for more cocoa flavor, & caramel for a twist on classic Irish cream.
Of course you'll need some desserts to go with your Irish cream! Some of our favorites include:
- Chocolate Hazelnut "Nanaimo Bars"
- Tahini Magic Squares
- Coffee Cake Biscotti Bread Pudding
- Butterscotch Pudding Pie
- Green shamrock sugar cookies
- Cookies & Cream: soft-baked biscotti dunkers
If you're feeling extra festive, you can spike the coconut topping of the magic squares with green food dye for some green treats! These green guys and the shamrock cookies would be fun cookie gifts to bring some of your coworkers or bring to your kid's classmates.
Homemade Irish Cream
1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup heavy or whipping cream
1 (14oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup Irish whiskey
1. In the bottom of a pitcher, whisk cocoa powder and a spoonful of cream into a paste. Slowly add more cream a spoonful at a time until the paste is smooth and loose enough that you can whisk the rest of the cream in larger splashes.
2. Once all of the cream is in, whisk in condensed milk, whiskey and vanilla.
3. Cover with lip or plastic wrap and keep in fridge for up to two weeks.
4. Serve in a tiny tumbler filled with ice, or splashed into coffee.