This easy and tasty recipe is a perfect comfort food or back pocket recipe that can be made on busy weeknights. A traditional Irish dish, this can be whipped up in less than 30 minutes. It is sure to satisfy even the most picky eaters!
Back pocket recipes, what a great concept. I recently read this term and realized I needed some of my own. These are recipes that are simple to make with a short list of ingredients. The type of recipes that you can pop in the market and and buy the ingredients without a shopping list, not because your are lazy but because it’s been one of those days. A simple, homemade, unfussy recipe that will satisfy your insides and your pocket book. I have ‘back pocket frozen TV dinners’ but not recipes. I don’t like reaching for those convenience foods or stopping at a restaurant for a take home dinner. I always regret it, too unhealthy or too expensive, or both!
Of course I am trying to eat healthier, it’s the beginning of the new year and recovery time from the holidays. Home cooking is a must. With home cooking, you can control what goes in your meals and know exactly what you are consuming, which can help you make better decisions while trying to feed yourself and your family. Substitutions are easy, milk for cream as an example. Reducing the amount of bad ingredients while increasing the amount of good ingredients is simple and smart.
Cooking everyday can be hard, especially if everybody is working outside of the home so back pocket recipes are a great idea. Even if you are a full time domestic engineer, you still have those days. Being mom’s taxi is time constraining. Right when you should be starting to prepare for dinner, the soft ball game goes into extra-innings. Then there is homework, bath time etc. Evenings can be hard.
Irish Colcannon fits the back pocket recipe requirements, simple, easy and easy to remember ingredients. Most people have butter and salt & pepper already, so if you can remember potatoes, cabbage and sour cream, you are golden. I like to use Mexican Creama instead of sour cream. It tastes richer and is already salted. Try this if you haven’t already, I dare you.
Colcannon is an easy traditional Irish smashed potato recipe with cabbage, or kale, butter, cream, salt & pepper. I have substituted Mexican Crema for milk and used a slaw mix for the cabbage. I have also added green onions or ‘scallions’ for additional flavor. White onions could work too. Some people add garlic. In the U.S. we have already shredded cabbage for ‘slaw’, sold in smaller portions than a whole head of cabbage. It also usually has some purple cabbage or carrots in it which is a bonus for color. I have a hard time using a whole head of cabbage, does this every happen to you? Leave a comment and let us know what you do with the leftover cabbage, I need to know. I hate wasting food.
Now on to the pretty pictures…
I have learned with this recipe that caramelizing cabbage in butter brings out a distinctive flavor in cabbage, slightly sweet. I have heard Christopher Kimball from America’s Test Kitchen talk about this, now I know what he meant.
Lightly smash the potatoes, you want it to be chunky, not creamy.
A traditional, easy Irish Colcannon recipe. Your whole family will love!
- 4 cups of russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 cups of shredded cabbage (I used pre-packaged slaw)
- 4 green onions, chopped
- 6 Tbs salted butter, divided
- 1 cup of sour cream (I used Mexican Crema)
- Boil potatoes in salted water until fork tender, drain and return to same pan. Add sour cream (or Mexican Crema) to potatoes, pepper and 4 Tbs of butter, mashing gently to allow for a chunky texture.
- While potatoes are cooking, sauté cabbage and green onions in 2 Tbs butter over medium heat until cabbage is soft and starting to char. Add to smashed potatoes and stir.
- Check for seasoning, adding salt as needed.
- Make a small well in center of mound, add a pat of butter. Entree serving suggestions include sausage, steak, chicken or by itself!
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