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Month: February 2023

Guinness Reduction

St. Patrick’s Day is a feast with deep cultural and religious roots. Like many other holidays, secular culture has taken it for a ride. Green beer and green beads does not an Irish make.

But who doesn’t want an excuse to cook, pour a Guinness, and transport to those verdant fields atop rocky cliffs. Sláinte!

Come along as we begin with a few Irish Texan connections. Careful, don’t finish your Jameson too quickly. We still have the main course — an authentic recipe from Chef Mike Morphew, M.C.F.A.

Irish Texans: Quick Facts to Share Around the Table

The Irish were among some of the early settlers in Texas, including Austin’s Old Three Hundred.  In fact, so many settled in central San Antonio, the area was referred to as Irish Flats. The towns of San Patricio and Refugio were settled in the early 1800’s by predominantly Irish.  In fact, in true Irish fashion, they were established on Saint Patrick’s Day – March 17th, 1836.

The Irish fought for Texas freedom – eleven died at the battle of the Alamo and fourteen were counted being massacred at Goliad with Colonial Fannin.  A full one seventh of Houston’s army that fought in the Battle of San Jacinto were Irish. Harry McArdle, Irish painter, created portraits of Sam Houston, Jefferson Davis and battle scenes of the Alamo and the Battle of San Jacinto. The Texas State Capitol displays his work.

Other nineteenth century notables are Peter Gallagher, a Texas Ranger and organizer of Pecos County, Samuel McKinney – president of Austin College and John Mallet, first chairman of the University of Texas faculty. Texas remains home to many family lineages who emigrated from Ireland after their “American Wake”. Y’all should google that.

Now, for the experience we are thrilled to share with you. We know international treasures are hiding in plain sight among small town Texas. We love nothing more than to find the people and places that make us the best place in the world to be. This time, we went back to La Grange in Le Petite Gourmet’s kitchen. Why? Well, to learn from a Chef who cooked for the Queen of England, of course.


La Grange is where we found Chef Mike Morphew, M.C.F.A., a UK native who knows and loves Irish pub food. So, how did he get to Texas?  He married a Texan, of course! The pull of the Lone Star State is strong.

Texicureans were treated to a cooking session with Chef Morphew. The star of the show that Chef Mike prepared was Loin of Pork Stuffed with Leeks and Fresh Sage, smothered in a Guinness Reduction. Doesn’t the name just make you hungry?

Staying true to his motto that the fewer ingredients in a recipe, the better, the pork loin only uses 5 ingredients, and makes a fabulous presentation with the Guinness Reduction.

The starter to this creation was Curried Parsnip Soup.  Colcannon Potatoes and Cabbage with Caraway and Butter served as sides to the main event.  A desert of Apple and Mixed Berry Crumble with Custard Sauce topped off the evening.

We are grateful Chef Morphew now calls Texas home and was willing to share his time with Texicureans.  With him, he brings a long list of accomplishments that formed his immense knowledge of the culinary arts. He has worked for European hotels and instructed culinary schools. But his personal crowning achievement is working in the royal kitchen and preparing meals for the Royal family.

Texicureans invite you to don your green, invite some friends or family over, and share a simple to prepare Irish Pub meal. The recipes and full video “how to” for the Loin of Pork Stuffed with Leeks and Fresh Sage can be found at www.texicureans.com. There, you can join our recipe club for weekly updates.

Roasted Pork Loin with Sage and Leeks, Smothered in a Guinness Reduction

A True Irish Pub Main Course
3.77 from 13 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Irish
Servings 8


  • 3 Pound Boneless Pork Loin
  • 1 bunch Fresh sage leaves
  • 2 Leeks washed, shredded, cooked in butter until tender
  • 1 cup Pork trimmings diced
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 Medium onion chopped fine
  • 1 cup Guinness beer
  • 1 pack brown gravy diluted
  • 1 pint chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Trim the pork loin and keep trimmings
  • Make an incision along the side to create a pocket
  • Rub the pork with salt and pepper
  • Put the pork trimmings in a processor with chopped sage and egg white and puree well, add the leek and salt and pepper, plus a little nutmeg, stuff this inside the pork loin and tie up, stab with a knife an insert sage leaves in the incisions
  • Place into a roasting tray and drizzle with oil.
  • Roast in an oven at 375 till cooked approx. 1.5 hours
  • Take out and rest the pork
  • Add the chopped onion to a pan with a little butter, cook for 5 minutes.
  • Add a little sage and the Guinness and reduce, add a splash of red wine and the stock
  • Reduce and then thicken with the gravy mix, season with salt and pepper
  • Slice and serve topped with Guiness reduction.


Keyword Irish Pub Food, Irish meal, St Patrick's Day meal,

Brandy Velvet

When I was in High School Band, my director always said, “your audience at a concert will best remember the first song and the last song, so make it your best”!

This tastefully decadent desert  – smooth, cool, and a delight to consume will do just that!  It’s the finale to end all finales.

You will need to slip into the kitchen to prepare at the last moment before serving, but by having all ingredients and the blender in one spot  you’ll  be back in “two shakes of a sheep’s tail”,  And when you start delivering it to the table, I promise the “ooh’s and aah’s” will make it ll worthwhile.

You can use coffee ice cream or coffee gelato.  I prefer the gelato for a purer taste.

The yield is 5 cups – its easy to double, and I suggest doing so if you have 5-6 people.

Brandy Velvet

Smooth and Decadent
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 4


  • ½ tsp dark instant coffee granules
  • ¼ cup hot water
  • 1 pint coffee gelato (or coffee ice cream)
  • ¼ cup Brandy
  • 1/4 cup chocolate syrup


  • Whipped Cream
  • Grated Chocolate


  • Combine coffee granules and hot water, stirring until granules dissolve.
  • Pour coffee into a blender, adding gelato, brandy, and chocolate syrup.
  • Process until smooth and combined, stopping once to scrape down the sides.
  • Pour into glasses (I like martini) and garnish.  Serve immediately.


Keyword desert, coffee desert, chocolate desert, chilled, brandy, chilled desert, gelato, whipped cream

Family Snack Board

Many times, the simple things in life are the best things in life.  I think this is particularly true with children.

Celebrating Valentines as a family when you have young children around creates a beautiful memory.  Why not make it special by designing a meal in the form of a charcuterie board?   Include all their fave things to eat – with a nod toward good nutrition, of course.

Rachel Meier designed this board with her children’s favorite things in mind.  She created a simple masterpiece that is as fun to eat as it is tasty. Designed for Valentines, this board can be detailed for St. Patrick’s Day, Easter, a summer swim, a birthday party, and the list goes on and on!

Family Snack Board

A child's food fantasy
Course Appetizer
Servings 4


  • Peanut Butter and Jelly
  • Cheese
  • Mini Cucumbers
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Powdered donuts
  • Mini chocolate chip muffins
  • Pretzels, melting chocolates, and sprinkles
  • M & M's
  • Candy Hearts
  • Peppermint sticks
  • Stroopwafels
  • Circus Cookies


  • Think of your children favorite things and colors for the theme
  • Prep everything – at least one vegetable and some fruit.  Cut the bread for the PBJ into a shape,unwrap cheese and open candy containers.  Dip pretzels in melting chocolate and sprinkle.  Cut letters out of cheese slices using small cookie cutters.
  • Assemble and enjoy!


The possibilities are endless - themes, ingredients, and colors!
Keyword charcuterie, charcuterie board, cheese, cheese board, meat board, valentines board, Childrens parties, Family gatherings