Our family loves to celebrate the saints, even if we don’t get around to doing it as often as we might like. The good news is, I’m usually going to be cooking anyway, so making something a little special for a feast day isn’t really that much extra trouble. Here’s a little something adapted from the cookbook Extending the Table. It’s a traditional Irish dish of cabbage and potatoes that we like to have for St. Patrick’s Day. I’ve followed this recipe closely, and it’s delicious.
- 1 lb cabbage or kale
- 1 lb potatoes, peeled and diced
- 2 small leeks or onions or 6 green onions with tops
- ½ c cream or milk
- ¼ tsp salt
- ⅛ tsp pepper
- ⅛ tsp mace (optional)
Shred or finely chop cabbage/kale and bring to a boil in a little water. Reduce heat and simmer until crisp-tender, 5-10 minutes. Drain well. (Liquefy in a blender if you really want to hide the cabbage from your kids). Boil potatoes separately until tender. Cook leeks/onions/green onions in cream/milk for about 10 minutes. Mash potatoes and season with salt, pepper, and mace (optional). Mix the onions and milk into the potatoes, then mix in the cabbage. You can do this on the stove over low heat to keep it warm, or do it in a stand mixer. The goal is to get it light and fluffy and well mixed. Dab with butter and serve.
There are lots of ways to make colcannon—it’s very forgiving—and my husband, the “King of Mashed Potatoes,” has his own way. (It is quicker and easier)! Here goes: Leave the peels on the potatoes, roughly chop the cabbage, and boil potatoes and cabbage together. Drain. Put a stick of butter in the bottom of a stand mixer (preferably with the whisk attachment) and add the potatoes and cabbage on top. Beat with enough whole milk to make it nice and smooth. Salt and pepper to taste.