So tell me, are you hoping to catch a Leprechaun this St. Patrick’s Day? Have you ever indulged in so many adult beverages on a St. Patrick’s Day past that you thought you saw one? Well, let me tell you about today’s recipe: Leprechaun Bait!
What we’ve got going on here is a magically delicious combination of chex cereal, Lucky Charms, salty pretzels, pistachios, cashews, M&Ms and Lucky Charms marshmallows, addictively coated with a silky white chocolate. Leprechaun bait? More like Leprechaun crack if you ask me!
But perhaps I’ve gotten ahead of myself. You can’t really conduct a Leprechaun hunt if you aren’t familiar with the wee fellows.
A Leprechaun is one of the fairy folk that live in Ireland. Cobblers by trade, these diminutive fellows (no taller than 3 feet) live a solitary life. They are very focused on their appearance, dressed to the nines in a green suit, top hat and buckled shoes. Their love for green fashion apparently developed sometime in the 20th Century. Prior to that, they were fond of wearing red. Yeats explained that solitary fairies wore red, whereas trooping fairies tended to wear green.
There seems to be a bit of controversy about where the name “leprechaun” comes from. In middle Irish there is the word luchrupán which means small body or it could derive from the word leithbrágan translating to half shoe which eludes to their profession. Or if you are a fan of the Artemis Fowl series of books, you are well aware that Leprechaun is from Lower Elements Police Reconnaissance – LEPrecon for short. (OMG – If you have not read this young adult series put it to the top of your to read list!!! And a movie is coming out soon!)
But wait….let me get back to the traditional folklore Leprechaun. Leprechauns love music and dancing, having ceilis which have been known to last for days. Perhaps these fairy raves are how they all wore their shoes out. Because apparently shoe making/mending is quite lucrative. It is well know that each leprechaun has a pot of gold which they have hidden somewhere. It is that pot of gold that has caused them to have such a troubling history with humans, which we know tend to be very greedy – always after the poor Leprechauns pot of gold or lucky charms.
Making matters worse, there is that rumor that if you catch a Leprechaun they will grant you three wishes. You know, like a little green genie. This relentless pursuit is perhaps why leprechauns are know to be tricksy or even sometimes grumpy or distrustful. If you had to put up with being constantly hassled for money and favors, you’d be grumpy too. Kind of like the long suffering denizens of New York City. However if folks chose to be nice to them, Leprechauns have been know to bestow huge rewards, like a castle full of gold, to such good samaritans. Now I should point out what with St. Patrick’s Day upon us, there is a fairy known as a clurichaun which is said to be a cousin of the Leprechaun. Clurichauns, which tend to hang around breweries, pubs and wine cellars, are know to be often drunk. And rather than happy drunks, they are the surly, boisterous, fighting type of drunk. They raise all kinds of ruckus at night, keeping good folk awake with all the commotion. They have even been know to go on wild joyrides on unsuspecting dogs, cats or sheep. Terrible altogether! Though I would be remiss if I did not mention that there is some thought that these aren’t two different types of fairies, but that Clurichauns are actually just Leprechauns out on a bender!
But wait just a second! I have really gotten off track here. I was supposed to be telling you about this Leprechaun Bait. This addictive snack is really very easy to make and will be a perfect addition to your St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.
In the spirit of full disclosure, my Mom always makes this at Christmas with some red and green M&M’s and craisins thrown into the mix. I love the stuff and look forward to it every year, so I decided to give it a St. Patrick’s Day spin by using green, white and orange M&M’s (colors of the Irish flag) green pistachios and Lucky Charms Marshmallows. Feel free to customize it as you see fit, cuz I gotta tell you – once you taste this delicious mix you’re going to be making it all the time. Yup – Leprechaun crack I tell you!
And if you do see a Leprechaun this year, don’t be trying to abduct him, rob him or nag him for favors. Just pour him a drink and share this snack with him. You never know, perhaps he’ll forego his tricksy ways and you’ll be rewarded!
- 6 cups Rice Chex cereal
- 3 cups Lucky Charms cereal sans marshmallow bits (usually I use Cheerios, but since you’ve already got a box of Lucky Charms opened…Though this will make the mix a bit sweeter since Lucky Charms is frosted)
- 2 cups broken pretzels ( I used Snyder’s Snaps but you could use small stix)
- 1 cup pistachios
- 1 cup cashews
- 12 oz. M&M’s candy (I ordered specific color’s from the M&M store which does a St. Patrick’s Day mix as well* see disclaimer at bottom of post. Though you could just pick through regular M&M’s to get the green and orange ones)
- 27 oz. White Chocolate chips
- 1 cup marshmallows from Lucky Charms (I was able to get ahold of a limited edition box that had green clover & gold coin marshmallows)
In a large bowl, combine the Chex, Lucky Charms cereal (without marshmallows), pretzels, pistachios, cashews and M&M’s.
Cover counter with parchment paper.
Place white chocolate chips in top of double boiler and heat until melted through.
Pour the melted chocolate over the cereal mixture.
Stir quickly but carefully, taking care not to crush the Chex cereal, but to ensure that the mixture is completely coated with the white chocolate.
Turn the mixture out onto the parchment paper, spread it out and sprinkle evenly with the Lucky Charms marshmallows. Press down gently to get the marshmallows to adhere.
Allow the white chocolate to set. Break into smaller pieces and store in air-tight containers.
Leprechaun Bait brought to you today by: Runcible Eats (www. leaandjay.com)
Links for helpful Kitchen Tools & Ingredients for Leprechaun Bait:
St. Patrick’s Day M&M mix – I feel rather nit picky about mentioning this, but it is a bit of a pet peeve of mine. The M&M’s store St. Patrick’s Day mix is made up of green and white M&M’s which have been stamped with some lovely shamrocks – which is great. However, some are also marked with “Happy St. Patty’s Day” Arrrrghhhhh! Who is “St. Patty” Did Peppermint Patty from the Peanuts cartoon strip perform a couple of miracles I was unaware of which got her canonized? If I had noticed that slip up, I would not have purchased them. Deal breaker! I would have just bought some plain green and white M&M’s. Patrick in Irish is Pádraig and the nickname for that is Paddy. Not Patty, which is a nickname for Patricia. Come on M&M’s folks – surely you can do better!