Potatoes and hearty greens are a huge staple of our diet when it starts to get cold outside. The days get shorter, and we get lazier. When you want something that will stick to your ribs, keep you warm, but also deliver a daily dose of greens, this is a stupidly-fast and easy dish to make.
This dish is based on the Irish classic colcannon, made a bit lighter with more greens, and vegetarian. Done this way, the dish is a more about the succulent flavorful greens than the potatoes.
Potatoes are always on hand in our pantry. When greens are plentiful, we stock up and always have some raw in our fridge or chopped and pre-cooked in our freezer. If you don’t have access to fresh, frozen greens are just as nutritious and can simply be defrosted and drained to add to the potatoes in this recipe.
Recipe: Mashed Potatoes and Hearty Greens
Makes 4 servings.
- 5-8 yellow potatoes (about 3lbs)
- 1 bunch of kale/chard/collard greens/spinach (should yield 3/4 cup to 1 cup when cooked)
- 4-6 tbsp of cold butter
- 1/2 cup of cream or milk of choice
- chopped chives or green onion tops (optional)
- salt and pepper
- Start by washing and rinsing the potatoes well to remove any debris, but leave the skins on. Poke each one a couple of times with a fork or knife just to pierce the skin so steam can escape while cooking. Place into a microwave-safe glass bowl and microwave 5 minutes at a time until the potatoes are soft in the center when poked with a fork.
- While the potatoes are in the microwave, chop the hearty greens, removing any large stems. Saute them in a lightly-oiled pan over low-medium heat and mix to coat. Cover and let cook down for about 10 minutes, mixing every few minutes. Continue cooking them until you are satisfied with their done-ness (have a taste to be sure), add a dash of salt and remove from heat. The thicker the original leaves, the longer they should be cooked to reduce bitterness. Chard and spinach are relatively delicate, whereas collard greens are heartier and need more time. Kale is somewhere in the middle depending on the variety.
- Mash the potatoes with a fork in the bowl while adding the butter. Try not to over-mash, the potatoes should be cooked enough that a few chunks just add to the texture of this dish.
- Add the greens to the potatoes, as well as the cream/milk, and continue mashing and mixing until desired consistency is reached. Add the chives or green onions if you wish. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and you are ready to eat!
Enjoy anywhere you would serve creamed spinach or mashed potatoes. No gravy necessary.
About this author: I'm a New Yorker who would rather cook than go out to restaurants. Sometimes I think I may be in the wrong city for that. Then I remember the exotic ingredients I'd be hard-pressed to find if I lived somewhere else. My cooking style is an eclectic range of everyday-American, Italian, middle-eastern, with extensive forays into Japanese cuisine, and some pit-stops into Indian and African cuisines. I love to try my hand at recreating dishes I taste. While I enjoy most anything with a flavor, from high cuisine to instant junk food, I have a soft spot in my belly for home-style cooking no matter the geographic or ethnic origin. Read more from this author...