Friday, April 10, 2009

Irish Comfort Food - Colcannon

Colcannon (pronounced with the accent on the "col" which sounds like "coal" and the second syllable sounds more like "kennen") is about as Irish as you can get: potatoes, cabbage and leeks. Most people think of corned beef and cabbage for St. Patrick's day, but I go for this homey dish that I think was probably more representative of what most Irish ate.

Regardless of the sociology of the dish, it is is one of my favorite ways to eat mashed potatoes and greens. It's pure comfort food with healthy greens, so I never feel any guilt for taking seconds! It's also really easy to make and kids can help as well, particularly in mashing the potatoes. Quite often I use whatever greens I happened to have in the frig, particularly if they're starting to lose their freshness, so in addition to the traditional green cabbage, I make it with spinach, kale, swiss chard or even beet greens. Also you don't have to use leeks, onions are just as good.


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large leek, sliced in half, rinsed and chopped in half moons up to light green part of stem
1 bunch greens or 1 cup green cabbage, shredded fine

1 batch mashed potatoes (however you make them, try to leave it chunky if possible, not whipped smooth using beaters since the greens will also be chunky)

Saute leeks or onions in olive oil over medium heat, don't allow to brown. When leeks/onions are soft, add greens and stir to mix with leeks/onions until wilted. Salt and pepper to taste.

Add vegetable mixture to mashed potatoes and combine well.

Love and hugs!

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