Happy St. Patrick’s Day
I know it’s not a Tuesday, but I couldn’t resist a recipe appropriate to a holiday (like last week’s Hamantashen). There was a custom to stir charms (not the candy) into colcannon and they would foretell an event to come – a ring might mean you will get married; a coin would mean you will be getting money, etc. Not being much of a romantic, I think this just sounds like a choking hazard so I don’t recommend it as a St. Patrick’s day tradition – especially if you are having plenty of beer with your meal. An authentic recipe for colcannon will generally include generous amounts of butter and milk, but this one is delicious without either. So here’s a yummy Irish recipe that is great to serve with corned beef. Happy St. Patrick’s Day – Enjoy!
Although not especially true to tradition, I like to stir in some dill when I add the cabbage, to give it a fresh taste. Other variations include adding cooked, crumbled bacon and using the bacon fat instead of oil and/or adding chopped parsley, or scallion, or chives.
2 cups peeled and cubed potatoes
1 cup vegetable or chicken broth
1 cup water
2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
2 cups lightly packed chopped green cabbage
1 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon chopped dill or parsley
1/4 teaspoon black pepper or more or less to taste
Salt to taste (I used a lot)
1. In a 1-quart saucepan, cook the potatoes in the broth and water (there should be enough to cover the potatoes by 1-inch, if not add extra water). Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium low and cook, uncovered, 15 to 20 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.
2. While the potatoes are cooking, in a 10-inch skillet, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the cabbage and onion. Cook, stirring, until cabbage has wilted and the onions are starting to brown.
3. Drain the potatoes, reserving any cooking liquid. Place potatoes in a large bowl and mash adding as much of the reserved broth as necessary to achieve the consistency you like. For smooth mashed potatoes: mash using an electric beater until smooth (but don’t over beat or the potatoes will become sticky). For lumpy potatoes: mash with fork until desired consistency.
4. Add cabbage-onion mixture and dill or parsley, pepper and salt; stir until combined.
Makes: 3 1/2 cups Serves: 4 (or less because people can really eat a lot of these)