Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Irish Week: Colcannon and Guinness Ice Cream Floats

I have never made colcannon, but I knew that I needed a dish with potatoes and cabbage for Irish week, because what is more Irish than those two vegetables (or a tuber and a vegetable, whatever)? I like mashed potatoes, but I have never been blown away by them. Who knew that you could add cabbage and leeks to mashed potatoes and your world would change? I am telling you, I am never going to make mashed potatoes again. It is colcannon from here on out, because it is SO delicious. 

1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes
1 savoy cabbage, trimmed, pale-green leaves finely shredded (4 cups)
1 leek, pale-green and white parts only, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 cup milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Coarse salt

1. Preheat broiler. Peel and quarter potatoes, and place in a medium saucepan; add enough cold water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until tender when pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes. Drain potatoes and return to saucepan. Mash with a potato masher or pass through a ricer; cover pan to keep warm.

2. Meanwhile, in another saucepan, combine cabbage, leek, milk, 2 tablespoons butter, and nutmeg; season with salt. Cover, and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until cabbage and leek is soft but not browned, about 15 minutes. Stir into potatoes.

3. Spread mixture in an 8-inch square baking dish. Make a small well in the center, and place under the broiler until lightly browned on top, about 5 minutes.

4. Remove from broiler. Place remaining 2 tablespoons butter in well. Serve immediately, spooning melted butter from well onto each serving, if desired.

By the way, you may notice in the third picture above that the leeks and cabbage are cooking in a large saute pan. That gorgeous All-Clad pan was a gift from my parents for my birthday. Despite today being its first appearance on this blog, it has been used well. I love it.

I don't make dessert very often (refer here for more info on that), but I happened to have vanilla ice cream in my freezer and left over Guinness. So Guinness floats! I will not post a recipe because if you can't figure out how to make a Guinness float, please don't ever touch anything in a kitchen. Or at least in my kitchen.

Bon appetit.

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