Saint Patrick’s Day is already on the horizon, and though most of us will probably not partake in a festive bar-scene this year, we will be eating classic Irish foods. Corned beef is most likely going to be in most people’s crock-pots or instant pots, steaming away until fork tender, but it’s the side dishes that really bring an Irish feast altogether. Potatoes, potatoes and more potatoes are the most popular food in Ireland, and it wouldn’t be a proper holiday without them.
Colcannon is a traditional side dish that pairs nicely with a couple slices of corned beef. Mashed potatoes made with a little butter and hot milk, are folded together with steamed cabbage to make colcannon. Sometimes there are a few additions to this dish, like diced ham or bacon, and sautéed onions or leeks of some kind. I added both shallots and caraway seeds to my recipe, creating my-take on this famous dish with a couple of new notes of flavor.
This side dish is enjoyable in the colder months of the year because it pairs so nicely with roasted meat, or chicken. Serving colcannon is a clever way to get some added vegetables into your family members because the steamed cabbage is hidden inside a creamy mash. It’s just good tasting comfort food with some healthy benefits.
1 pound potatoes – new, red or russet
1 head cabbage, any variety – sliced thinly
1 cup whole milk
1 shallot, minced
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
salt & pepper
oil for cooking
- In a pot, add potatoes to cold water and place over medium high heat. Boil until fork tender, drain – set aside until cool to the touch.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, add 1 teaspoon oil and shallot, sauté for 2 minutes. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and milk. Turn heat to low and cook until simmering.
- In a pot, add 1 tablespoon butter, cabbage, caraway seeds and 1/2 cup water, steam for 5 minutes. Pour into a bowl, set aside.
- Peel potatoes, and add back into pot, mashing with remaining tablespoon butter. Pour hot milk mixture over potatoes, and mash or puree with immersion blender until creamy.
- Spoon steamed cabbage into potato mixture, and fold until combined. Serve hot with corned beef or other protein. Enjoy!