In honour of one of the world’s most beloved saints, here is a recipe from County Mayo, Ireland. Although calcannon is more of a traditional Halloween dish, I like to make it for St. Paddy’s Day, in order to have something green without resorting to food colouring. (No, I am not a fan of green beer.) Also, look under links for some more Irish recipes from Nigella Lawson.
1 medium-sized cabbage (about as big as a baby’s head)
3-4 medium potatoes (about as big as your fist)
2 leeks, both green and white parts, chopped
1 cup milk or cream
salt and pepper to taste
1 pinch ground nutmeg
1/2 cup butter
In a large saucepan, boil cabbage until tender; remove and chop or blend well. Set aside and keep warm. Boil potatoes until tender. Remove from heat and drain. Simmer the leeks in the milk or cream until they are soft.
Season and mash potatoes well. Stir in cooked leeks and milk. Blend in the cabbage and heat until the mixture is pale green and nicely fluffy. Make a well in the center and pour in the melted butter. Mix well.