Is corned beef and cabbage dish really Irish?

Planning to serve corned beef and cabbage on Monday for St. Patrick’s Day?

You might be surprised to learn that the popular dish is believed to be an American invention. The dish was probably developed by Irish immigrants using foods they found in the United States.

Irish chef Kevin Dundon does include a recipe for pulled corned beef in his latest cookbook; however, he considers it more of an Easter dish. (See Side Dish, left).

Potatoes were introduced to Ireland in the late 16th century so they technically aren’t Irish either.

At least, that’s according to Kerrygold, the international brand of the Irish Dairy Board, which is the marketing and selling cooperative created by Ireland’s small dairy farmer co-ops and co-op creameries.

When asked, “What’s true Irish fare?” Kerrygold answers, “Butter and cheeses.” Of course, those are the food products Kerrygold markets in the U.S. and Canada.

“While potatoes were introduced to Ireland in the late 16th century, cattle have been in the Emerald Isle since 3,500 BC,” a news release says.

So alongside your green-colored cupcakes and green beer, the cooperative suggests serving traditional dishes using butter or cheese, like ploughman’s sandwiches, which in its most basic form is a ham and cheese sandwich served on a hearty brown bread; colcannon, a delicious mix of potatoes and green cabbage; or a casserole of potatoes, apples and bacon.

In south Louisiana, Kerrygold butter is widely available in supermarkets and specialty stores. Its cheeses can be found at The Fresh Market and Sam’s Club and perhaps other stores.