Hello to all my lovely readers. Since it is now officially Spring I’d hoped to be outside gardening. Instead it is wet and windy, so I am staying indoors. Retreating to the earth of our kitchen and making a big bowl of Leek Colcannon.
An incredible side dish made with ultra creamy, mashed potatoes that are mixed with gorgeously green, savoy cabbage. Finally the addition sautéed leeks creates a flavour filled side dish.
This has fast become a family favourite. Since it is so versatile, an ideal accompaniment to sausages, homemade pie, chops, roast chicken. Alternatively serve on its own topped with an egg. Ultimately you have endless possibilities as to what you could pair this dish with.
Celebrating The Humble Leek
Did you know that the beginning of November heralds the start of the British leek growing season? Nope neither did I!!
I absolutely love leeks, with their delicate onion flavour and that is exactly what makes them perfect in this dish.
Colcannon is a traditional Irish dish made using mashed potatoes and cabbage or kale. While I challenged myself to come up with some recipes to celebrate the British leek, I knew it’s delicate flavour would perfectly compliment the traditional Colcannon dish.
Also using seasonal fruit and vegetables in my cooking is important to me and savoy cabbage is in season now, so my choice of brassica was decided.
Nutmeg also pairs beautifully with leeks and so I knew I had to incorporate that into the dish – thus the Leek Colcannon idea was born. Whoops there I go, having ideas again – fortunately this one turned out to be absolutely delicious.
Recipe : Serves 6 generous portions of Leek Colcannon
1.75kg/4lb Pre-peeled weight Desiree Red or potatoes suitable for mashing.
50g/2oz Butter plus 1Tbsp extra
300ml/10fl Double Cream or whole milk
1/4tsp Freshly Grated Nutmeg
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 Medium Savoy Cabbage
1 Large Leek
Method : Important please read through the whole method before starting.
Preparing And Making The Mashed Potatoes
- First of all, peel and dice the potatoes into 1″/2.5cm chunks and place in a large pan, cover with water. If you wish to add salt to the water that’s fine, I left the seasoning to the end.
- Bring the potatoes to the boil and the simmer until a fork easily pierces the potato chunks – it’s worth checking a couple.
- Drain the potatoes and place back into the saucepan. Allow to steam dry for a couple of minutes.
- Add the butter, 250mls of the cream, salt, pepper and nutmeg.
- Nutmeg adds a subtle flavour that adds to the Leek Colcannon’s flavour.
- Mash the potatoes, cream and butter together until completely smooth.
- Add the rest of the cream if needed – the potatoes should be creamy, not dry. Check for seasoning and adjust as necessary.
Preparing And Cooking The Savoy Cabbage
- While the potatoes are cooking you can prepare the cabbage and leeks.
- Vibrant, deep green leaves from the cabbage.
- Remove five leaves from the cabbage and stack them on top of each other.
- Slice the leaves in half and then finally shred each half.
- Continue peeling off the leaves, stacking and shredding. I used almost all of the savoy cabbage. I left the very few inner, yellow leaves. If you have a large cabbage cut in half and use one half.
- Place the shredded cabbage into a large saucepan, pour over an inch of boiling water from the kettle, clamp on the lid and cook on a high heat for no longer than 5 minutes.
- Drain the cooked cabbage.
- Place the cabbage back into its pan and allow to steam dry for a couple of minutes.
Preparing And Cooking The Leeks
- First of all trim the tough dark green top from the leek and also the root end.
- Make a slit cutting almost through from the top of the leek to two thirds down.
- Wash the leek under running cold water ensuring any dirt, trapped between the leaves is washed away.
- Shake the leek over the sink to remove any excess water.
Tip : I wash my leeks, shake them and leave them upside down on the draining board to drain, before prepping other vegetables.
- Cut the washed leek in half.
- Finely shred the leek.
- Place a tablespoon of butter into a shallow pan and gently saute the leeks until tender, over a medium heat.
- Sauté the shredded leek for 5 minutes until tender and cooked.
- Add both cabbage and leek to the mashed potato.
- Stir all the ingredients together until combined.
- Finally, decant the leek colcannon into a heatproof dish. Adding dots of butter and a final grating of nutmeg.
The Leek Comes was served with Steak Leek And Ale PieSteak Leek And Ale Pie alongside steamed carrots. Fortunately there was enough left over to make bubble and squeak patties for lunch the next day!
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I do hope that I’ve inspired you to try this delightful dish. Although I used double cream – well we were celebrating the start of the British leek growing season – milk is a perfectly fine substitute. Switching up the greens to Kale or Spring Greens through the growing season will be fine, just make sure they are cooked until just tender – I haven’t found a fan of overcooked, soggy cabbage yet!
The British Leek Association provided me with some of the ingredients for this recipe. All content and opinions are my own. I did not receive payment for creating this recipe. Please see my Disclosure Policy.Share