How to make Colcannon

Colcannon is one of the most famous traditional Irish foods. It was once a regular part of Irish diet, but has now become more of a seasonal meal, during the autumn and winter when the vegetables are in season.

Colcannon recipe. Image copyright Ireland Calling

Colcannon is a delicious creamy mixture of mashed potato and vegetables, usually curly kale or cabbage. It is usually served with boiled ham or bacon, or with sausages and fried eggs.

It was traditionally eaten at Halloween, and has a number of superstitions surrounding it. During the day, any single woman or girl of the house would be blindfolded and sent out into the garden to select a cabbage for the colcannon.

A ring was then hidden inside one of the servings of colcannon made with this cabbage, and whoever found it on their plate would be the next to marry.

Another unusual practice that took place, was that the single woman would take the first spoonful and the last spoonful of her colcannon, and place it inside her stocking and hang out front of the house. Then the next bachelor to walk through the door would be her intended husband.

Historically, Irish families would always make the most of the food they had available, so there are several different ingredients and recipes for colcannon that vary from region to region and also with many families also adding their own secret ingredients and trademark techniques.

Colcannon was such a staple part of Irish diet that it even had a song written about it, known as Colcannon or also the Skillet Pot. Watch a YouTube video of the song here.

Colcannon recipe

What you will need
Curly Kale/cabbage
Full fat milk
Scallions/spring onions/onions
Cooking oil

Here is a video from YouTube chef O’Reilly’s Recipes showing you how to make Colcannon.

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