As they travel the parade route, tuxedoed men and youths distribute strings of colorful beads, dried fava beans and genuine Italian kisses. Courtesy of The Italian American St. Joseph Society hide caption

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Courtesy of The Italian American St. Joseph Society

Sea algae at low tide along the Irish coast. Seaweed was long a part of Irish cuisine. Nutrient-rich, it helped some survive the Great Famine. Irish cooks reviving the practice say it's not just good for you – it's a zap of flavor from the sea. AdventurePicture/Getty Images/iStockphoto hide caption

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AdventurePicture/Getty Images/iStockphoto

A blaa is a soft, doughy white roll – with either a soft or crusty top. It has a chewy texture that makes it a perfect vehicle for butter. Only the ones baked in Waterford, Ireland, can officially be called "blaa," but you can try out the recipe below at home. Elizabeth Rushe for NPR hide caption

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Elizabeth Rushe for NPR