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Appears in

Old Food

Old Food

By Jill Dupleix

Published 1998

  • About

The end of the harvest in Ireland was always celebrated with a meatless meal on October 31st, known as All Hallow Eve (Halloween), and colcannon is just one of the many potato dishes devised not just to feed but to satisfy. Traditionally, it was served with a pool of melted butter in the centre, but I find it rich enough without it. Well, maybe just a little dob.


  • 500 g (1 lb) Savoy cabbage
  • 500 g (1 lb) potatoes
  • 6 green (spring) onions
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz) cream
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz) milk
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp butter


Cut cabbage into thin shreds and rinse well in a pot of cold water. Cook cabbage in a large pot of simmering salted water until just tender, and drain well. Peel potatoes and cook in simmering, salted water until tender.

Chop green onions finely. Heat green onions, cream and milk in a small pot, stirring, and simmer gently for 5 minutes.

Mash potatoes well, then start beating with a wooden spoon, gradually introducing the cream and onions. Add sea salt and pepper and stir well. Add cabbage, stir once or twice and serve topped with - a little - butter.