Thursday, March 19, 2009

colcannon italiano

Is there such a thing? Who knows? But being both a little Irish and one half italian I thought I'd give it a try.

My recipe includes cavelo nero, otherwise known as latin kale. It's such a great substitute to a thicker leaf kale which although my family loves, might be a bit strong to someone who is not used to eating this wonderfully healthy vegetable.

Colcannon Italiano
  1. In salted water boil four large potatoes that have been peeled and roughly chopped.
  2. While the potatoes are boiling, remove and woody stems from 2 bunches of kale. Chop into large bite size pieces. They will shrink after boiling.
  3. After 15 minutes, when the potatoes are tender, remove them with a strainer. Do not pour the water out.
  4. Add the kale to the salted potato water. Boil for 5-7 minutes until wilted but not totally shapeless.
  5. While kale is boiling, mash the potatoes with 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, and 1/2 cup hot milk. Taste and add season if necessary. Cheese will be coming next, so don't over salt.
  6. Strain kale. Add to potatoes. Mash together. Add 3/4 cup -1 cup freshly grated pecorino romano.
  7. Put into greased baking dish. Top with 1 cup fresh bread crumbs and another 1/2 cup of pecorino romano.
  8. You now have two options. Broil for two minutes and serve immediately. Or if you, like me, have made this earlier in the day you are going to want to reheat it. Bake first for 20 minutes at 400deg, if necessary broil to brown the topping.
It's such an easy side dish and would go with many entrees, roasted sausages, barbecued chicken, brisket, oooh I'm getting hungry. Try topping it with a poached egg. Frankly it would be a meal by itself.

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