My mother insisted that there be mashed potatoes on the table whenever she served cooked kale greens, and further thought you were foolish if you didn’t put a little of each on your fork together for each bite, followed close by a nibble of green onion. When I encountered my first recipe for colcannon, I understood why. It was the Irish in us.
This rich recipe was inspired by the colcannon served at Main Street Meats in Chattanooga, a dish so sustaining it will almost make you forgo their heavenly hamburger. Almost.
Reprinted from Victuals. Copyright © 2016 by Ronni Lundy. Photographs copyright © 2016 by Johnny Autry. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.
ON-DEMAND: Listen to Faith and Ronni discuss this recipe on The Faith Middleton Food Schmooze®.
- 1 bunch Kale (about 3/4 pound), stemmed and chopped
- 9 tablespoons (1 stick plus 1 tablespoon) unsalted butter
- 1/4 head green cabbage thinly sliced
- 1 medium yellow onion halved and thinly sliced
- 4 cloves garlic thinly sliced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/8 teaspoon Ground mace
- 1/8 teaspoon Ground white pepper plus more to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon Ground mustard
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
- 1/3 cup Light beer
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 2 pounds Red-skinned potatoes quartered
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 pound bacon crisp-cooked and chopped
- Place a large bowl filled with ice water next to the stove. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a large saucepan; add the kale and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer and cook for 3 minutes. Then drain, and plunge the kale into the ice water to stop the cooking. Drain again, and transfer to paper towels to dry.
- Melt the 1 tablespoon butter in a large Dutch oven set over medium heat. Add the cabbage, onion, garlic, bay leaf, mace, white pepper, mustard, cayenne, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring often, until the onions are soft, about 8 minutes.
- Add the beer to deglaze the pan, and stir until evaporated, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken broth and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook until the liquid is reduced by about half, about 5 minutes. Remove the bay leaf.
- Stir in the blanched kale, and when it is warmed, remove the pot from the heat. Add salt and white pepper to taste. Cover and keep warm while preparing the potatoes.
- Cover the quartered potatoes with cold water in a large pot. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Salt the water generously, and then turn the heat down to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Drain the potatoes, setting the empty pot aside, and mash them in a large, sturdy bowl until they begin to have a creamy consistency.
- Pour the cream into the empty potato pot, add the remaining stick of butter and a few pinches of salt, and warm over medium-low heat until melted. Combine the butter mixture with the potatoes and continue to mash until smooth.
- To serve, divide the potatoes among bowls. Top each with some of the cabbage mixture and garnish with the bacon.
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