Vegan Colcannon Irish Potatoes
Thanks to the coronavirus I am posting this Saint Patrick's Day recipe a bit late. As many may have seen, I have opened my Etsy account, The Elizabethan Closet, where my store features many vintage items that I have used to inspire me on this blog.
I found this adorable 1980's "Irish" skirt, which inspired me to make an Irish potato recipe. I love peasant cooking, and potatoes have been a hearty and healthy vegetable for Europeans for thousands of years. In fact, if it weren't for potatoes, not many people who have sustained nourishment in their time. Mashed potatoes are my favorite recipe, and wanted to ignite my home with the luck of the Irish.
According to whatscookinginamerica.net the history of Colcannon is, "During the 1600 and 1700’s in Europe and Ireland, potatoes, cabbages, and leeks were considered the food of the common man so it was inevitable that a dish would evolve that combines all the ingredients. The word colcannon is from the Gaelic term “cal ceannann” which means white-headed cabbage. It is also believed to be a derivative of the old Irish “cainnenin” translated as garlic, onion, or leek.In Ireland, colcannon is served as a special treat with ham or Irish bacon.
The Irish tradition is to serve colcannon as the main dish for Halloween festivities and refer to the evening as “Colcannon Night”. Colcannon is used for the foretelling of marriages. Just as Americans have the fun superstition of the single young lady who catches the wedding bouquet will be the next to marry. Young single Irish women hope to find the ring hidden in their plate of colcannon. A blindfolded, unmarried woman is to pick the head of cabbage or kale from the garden that is to be cooked in the colcannon dish. Charms such as rings, thimbles, and coins are wrapped and hidden in bowls of colcannon. This is a particularly exciting eve for the young men or women. If a young unmarried girl is lucky enough to find a ring in her bowl, a marriage proposal could be soon waiting for her and she would likely marry within the year before the next Colcannon Night. Other young maidens would fill their stockings with their first and last spoonfuls of colcannon and hang them from the front door handle. It is believed that the first man through the door would become their future husband."
Like a fair maiden, I wanted to celebrate this Saint Patrick's Day with a healthy and hearty side dish. Potatoes get a bad wrap, but today, when eating fried potatoes, the deep fryer wipes all of the nourishment out of the potatoes. In fact, the starch has long kept people nourished during their time of farming and hard labor.
The beauty of this skirt is inspirational for all to do a little bit of home cooking. Enjoy!
Find this skirt and other fun, funky and vintage items on my Etsy Shop, The Elizabethan Closet.
Vegan Colcannon Irish Potatoes
Prep Time: 5-10 minutes
Cook Time: 20-25 minutes
2 lbs potatoes (used white skin)
2 tbsp vegan butter
1 3/4 cup leeks (white parts)
2 garlic cloves
1/2 head small cabbage, finely chopped
3 spring onions, chopped
nondairy milk (optional to help mash potatoes)
salt and pepper to taste
Wash and boil potatoes in a large pot of water for 20 minutes, or until a knife can easily slice in half. In a pan, melt the butter and cook the vegetables (except the green onion) for several minutes until edible.
Once the potatoes are edible, drain the potatoes and return to the pot. Mash with some additional butter and (optional) nondairy milk (use as much as desired) and mix in the cooked greens. Mix in the raw green onion. The traditional method includes putting potatoes in a bowl, making a well, and adding a dollop of butter on top of the potatoes. Salt and pepper to taste.
*Note: I prefer a more buttery taste so used less nondairy milk and more butter in the recipe.
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Elizabeth Rae Kovar M.A. is Author of her memoir, Finding Om and is a Fitness Trainer, Yogi, Reiki Master, Presenter and Lover of Life. To view her portfolio please visit www.elizabethkovar.com