Every September barbecue fans from all over the world flock to Lisdoonvarna, Ireland for the World Cup Barbecue Championship. Before you think this is some cheap grilling contest, they knew enough to award legend Paul Kirk the grand price one year. This isn't a new thing, either. The recipe for the famous Maguire's Barbecue Sauce was written down in the 17th century and lost in a family bible, only to be found again recently. This tomato based sauce is mild in flavor with a Worcestershire taste.
Not only does Ireland know all about real barbecue but they buy gas and charcoal grills at a rate that has attracted the business of manufacturers all over the world. Virtually any grill or smoker you can buy in the United States can be bought on the Emerald Isle. With one of the fastest growing economies in Europe the Irish are hitting the patio and they are grilling.
It makes perfect sense for the Irish to enjoy both barbecue and grilling. Having long been a major producer of meat products and well versed in a wide range of preserving techniques the Irish have given us a long tradition of down to earth food. Now, with the word of barbecue spread on the winds of the internet and mass market production of grills and smokers the Irish can finally stand up on their long tradition of folk cooking and welcome a new age of grilled and smoked foods.
So what to prepare when St. Patrick's Day rolls around, or when you are feeling a little Irish? Of course you can always go with Corned Beef and cabbage or Irish Stew. Of course, corned beef and cabbage are an Irish-American dish and not a favorite of Ireland, but still a good meal.
So when you want to celebrate Ireland don't jump to conclusions, fire up the grill, stock up on the whiskey (a tradition from St. Patrick himself) and have a good hearty meal.