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Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with a Recipe That Isn’t Technically Irish: Bangers and Mash (Recipe)

Jules Stonesoup- Flickr

Bangers and mash is a meal that a lot of people make for St. Patrick’s Day and is also one that a lot of Irish taverns and restaurants serve, but did you know- bangers and mash is not a traditional Irish meal?  It’s true.

Bangers and mash is actually a traditional British dish made of mashed potatoes and sausages.  And an interesting note as to where the term “bangers” came from:  The term “bangers” when referring to sausage has been around since around 1919, but gained popularity in World War II because the sausages made around that time during rationing, were made with water so they were more likely to explode under high heat if not cooked carefully.  Get it now?

If you told somebody in Ireland they were having a breakfast that included bangers, they would be expecting small fireworks next to the bacon.  Irish sausages are “sausages.” People in Ireland only refer to sausages as bangers when they are referring to English people talking about sausages.

But anyhow- here’s an Irish twist on a classic recipe for bangers and mash if you’ve got your heart set on having them for St. Patrick’s Day.

Bangers and Mash- Irish Style


  1. 1 pound potatoes, peeled and diced
  2. 1/4 pound bacon, cut into 1 inch slices
  3. Pepper to taste
  4. 1 tablespoon butter
  5. 1/4 small head cabbage, thinly sliced
  6. 4 green onions, sliced
  7. Salt and pepper
  8. 1 tablespoon oil
  9. 1 pound sausage links
  10. 1 large onion, sliced
  11. 1 clove garlic, chopped
  12. 1 teaspoon thyme, chopped
  13. 2 tablespoons flour
  14. 1 bottle Guinness
  15. 2 tablespoons mustard
  16. 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  17. 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  18. 1 tablespoon butter
  19. 1 tablespoon sour cream
  20. Milk to taste


  1. Bring some water to boil, add the potatoes and simmer until fork tender, about 20-30 minutes.
  2. While potatoes are cooking, cook the bacon in a large pan over medium heat until it renders, about 3-5 minutes.
  3. Add the butter to the bacon, season with salt and pepper and cook until it foams, about a minute.
  4. Add the cabbage to the bacon, mix to coat and let cook until tender, about 10 minutes.
  5. Add the green onions to the cabbage, cook for 5 minutes, season with salt and pepper and set aside.
  6. Heat the oil in a pan over medium high heat.
  7. Add the sausage and cook until golden brown, about 2-4 minutes per side, and set them aside.
  8. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
  9. Add the garlic and thyme and saute until fragrant, about a minute.
  10. Sprinkle in the flour and let it cook for a few minutes.
  11. Add the Guinness, mustard and Worcestershire sauce and brown sugar along with the sausage and simmer for 10 minutes.
  12. Remove the sausage and continue to simmer to reduce by half about 10 minutes.
  13. While sausage is simmering, potatoes and mix in the cabbage followed by the butter, sour cream and enough milk until you get your favorite mashed potatoes consistency.
  14. Divide the potatoes between 4 plates, top with sausages and cover in gravy.

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