While I'm sure there are plenty of fans of colcannon, I generally think anything with kale in it is a hard sell to most Americans.
So I decided to give this classic a makeover for more appeal while staying true to its spirit. It was easier than I thought.
First, I decided to do it as a soup, the base of which was easy -- potatoes and onions simmered in chicken broth, then blended until smooth. A bit of cream and you basically have mashed potato soup. Not much to dislike there.
AP Photo - - Kale chips add a fresh take on a traditional St. Patrick’s Day favorite.
For the kale, I reached for a relatively new product -- kale chips. Available at most natural foods stores and some larger grocers, these "chips" are made by seasoning and roasting fresh kale until crispy. The result is quite delicious, similar to the potato chips they aspire to be.
Sprinkled over the potato soup, the kale chips add a nice salty, crunchy contrast to the smooth, creamy soup.
But since pig and potato go so nicely together, I couldn't leave it at that. A bit of crisped prosciutto crumbled over the soup adds a wonderful savory touch without adding much fat.
Can't find kale chips at the grocer? They're easy to make and can be done a day or so in advance. Chop one bunch of kale into bite-size pieces (remove any thick stems). Toss the pieces with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper. Bake on a foil-lined baking sheet at 350 F for 20 to 30 minutes, or until crunchy and dry. Cool, then store in a plastic bag.
Kale Chip Colcannon Soup
Start to finish: 30 minutes. Serves 6.
1 tablespoon butter
1 large yellow onion, diced
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon dried dill
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into small chunks
1 quart chicken broth
6 slices prosciutto
1/2 cup heavy cream
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup kale chips
In a large saucepan over medium-high, melt the butter. Add the onion and saute until just golden, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic powder, dill, minced garlic and potatoes. Saute for another 4 minutes, then add the chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer. Cover and cook for 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
Meanwhile, heat a large non-stick skillet over medium. Spritz the pan with cooking spray, then arrange 2 or 3 slices of the prosciutto flat in the pan. Fry, turning after 2 minutes, until browned and crisp on both sides. Repeat with the remaining prosciutto, then set aside.
Using either an immersion blender or working in batches with a traditional blender, puree the soup until mostly smooth. Some small chunks are fine.
Stir in the cream, then return the soup to a gentle simmer. Season with salt and pepper.
Divide the soup between serving bowls. Top each with some of the kale chips, then crumble 1 slice of prosciutto over each.
Nutrition information per serving (values are rounded to the nearest whole number): 311 calories; 139 calories from fat (45 percent of total calories); 15 g fat (7 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 43 mg cholesterol; 36 g carbohydrate; 10 g protein; 3 g fiber; 1,031 mg sodium.