St. Pat’s: Colcannon with Savoy Cabbage

Contains:  Dairy.  Is:  Gluten-free, vegetarian.  

I’m not Irish, but ever so often I want to be inspired by holidays that relate to various world cuisines.  In the past, going Irish, I’ve made shepherd’s pie (WITH lamb, of course), and a couple different cabbage dishes.   This time, I’ve opted for Colcannon, a potato/cabbage (or kale) dish with lots of dairy.

irish, st. patricks, potatoes, leeks, cabbage, buttermilk, sour cream, vegetarian, recipe

And, in this case, with buttermilk and sour cream!  

irish, st. patricks, potatoes, leeks, cabbage, buttermilk, sour cream, vegetarian, recipe

Buttermilk and sour cream for this recipe.

This recipe is inspired by Bon Appetit’s take on this dish.    I’m actually impressed they went with Yukon golds for the potato.   There’s just something so wonderful about that texture and flavor which only some of the golds can bring to potato-hood. (But use whatever potato you have to hand.)  I did take liberties with their recipe based on what I had, as you’ll see below.

irish, st. patricks, potatoes, leeks, cabbage, buttermilk, sour cream, vegetarian, recipe

I really meant to take a photo of the greens before dumping in the buttermilk and sour cream… Oh, well.

irish, st. patricks, potatoes, leeks, cabbage, buttermilk, sour cream, vegetarian, recipe

Here come the potatoes and the rest of the cabbage shreds.  Then, we mash and add seasonings.

I decided to play with their recipe a bit, making it truly my own.  And, as they point out on their site, there’s no one way to make colcannon, other than you do need potatoes and a brassica (either kale or a cabbage) to make this dish.  Typically topped with butter.

Prep time:  15 minutes, much of which can be done while the potatoes simmer.
Cook time: 30-40 minutes for potatoes, + 10 for leeks + 3 for garlic + another 15 = about 70 minutes total.
Rest time:  Not needed.
Serves:  4 as a side.
Cuisine:  Irish.
Leftovers?:  Sure.
Serving suggestion:  with corned beef brisket as a main.

Colcannon with Savoy Cabbage

  • About 4-5 medium Yukon Gold potatoes (about 1.5 pounds / 680 grams)
  • Coarse sea salt
  • 6 tablespoons salted butter or ghee, divided
  • 1 or 2 leeks, white and pale-green parts only, thinly sliced crosswise, about 4 ounces / 115 grams of usable leek.
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups (packed) / 475 mL savoy cabbage (from about ¼ large head), divided and thinly-shredded.
  • 1 cup / 235 mL  buttermilk
  • ½ cup / 120 mL full fat sour cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, as desired
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 or 2 scallions, thinly sliced.  (My scallions were scrawny, so I used two.)

Prep the potatoes by removing any buds, green, or bad spots.  Leave the skin on, unless you really can’t stand the skin (it is much more mellow on Yukons than on Russets, btw….)

Place in a pan and cover with water, adding about 1-2 teaspoons of sea salt.  Bring to a boil and reduce.  Allow to simmer, covered, for about 35 minutes.  A knife should go in the potatoes as if they were butter.

Meanwhile prep and measure everything else.

When the potatoes are cooked, or just prior, melt 4 tablespoon of the butter in a large skillet.

Add the leeks, and saute about 8-10 minutes, stirring frequently (meanwhile, remove the potatoes from their pot, drain).

Add the garlic to the skillet with the leeks, stir and saute.  About 2-3 minutes.  The leeks may brown lightly, this is fine.

Add about half of the savoy cabbage to the skillet, and allow to wilt.

Toss in the buttermilk and sour cream, and allow to come to a simmer.

Add the potatoes and the rest of the cabbage, and coarsely mash with a potato masher or similar implement.

Add nutmeg, pepper and salt, mix and taste.  Allow the liquid to cook down to where the colcannon is no longer soupy.

Place in serving bowl, add slices of the remaining butter dotted over the top, and sprinkle the scallion/green onion over.

irish, st. patricks, potatoes, leeks, cabbage, buttermilk, sour cream, vegetarian, recipe

A hearty individual serving of colcannon. Yes, the top photo is the colcannon in the large serving bowl, four full servings.

This dish was top-notch yum!  Colcannon is a dish I have never had before, but it’s overall really simple and something that will remain on my playlist now that I’ve discovered it.

Lets’ go celebrate at Fiesta Friday:  (with Antonia @ and Abbey @ Three Cats and a Girl. )






About goatsandgreens

The foodie me: Low/no gluten, low sugars, lots of ethnic variety of foods. Seafood, offal, veggies. Farmers' markets. Cooking from scratch, and largely local. The "future" me: I've now moved to my new home in rural western Massachusetts. I am raising chickens (for meat and for eggs) and planning for guinea fowl, Shetland sheep, and probably goats and/or alpaca. Possibly feeder pigs. Raising veggies and going solar.
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11 Responses to St. Pat’s: Colcannon with Savoy Cabbage

  1. Rita says:

    Happy St Patrick’s Day in advance.

  2. vicki says:

    This does sound yummy! I think I’m gonna try it for my family.

  3. Antonia says:

    I love shepherd’s pie! Thank you for bringing your scrumptious St Patrick’s Day dish to the party! Happy Fiesta Friday and St Patrick’s Day!

  4. petra08 says:

    Happy St Patrick’s day! What a great way to celebrate, perfect comfort food. 🙂

  5. Pingback: Growing & Harvesting Your Spuds (Potatoes) | Of Goats and Greens

  6. Fergy. says:

    Good recipe and I like the suggestion of pairing it with corned beef. In Ireland it is often served with boiled bacon which is very good and makes a change from using the same ingredients but serving as boiled bacon, cabbage and spuds which is very traditional. As with your mash recipe I have never tried nutmeg in this but I am going to give it a go.

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