Vegan Colcannon with Garlic Confit
Despite being a little bit Irish, I haven’t had much Irish food. I even visited Dublin for a couple of days about ten years ago, but I got food poisoning after my first meal there and didn’t eat a thing the rest of my stay. It was a real shame. So this year for St. Patrick’s Day, I decided to explore a dish with Irish roots instead of dying a milkshake green or whatever. I landed on colcannon, which is basically mashed potatoes with cabbage or kale mixed into them. Mashed potatoes are and have always been my jam. Like, I’ll take a scoop of mashed potatoes over fries any day. So this seemed like a no brainer.
My research on colcannon told me that most people keep colcannon very simple. Typically, it’s only four ingredients: potatoes, milk, butter, and cabbage/kale. So to justify putting another colcannon recipe out there, I decided to veganize it. But since so much of the flavor comes from rich dairy products, I needed a way to spice my vegan version up. Enter, garlic confit. My basic idea was to use the garlic enriched oil from my confit to replace butter. And my god, what a dream. I may never make mashed potatoes any other way.
But the thing is, garlic confit seems like a lot of work
I know. I thought the same thing. But it’s actually really easy to make. And such a flavor powerhouse. It’s similar to roasted garlic, which I could eat on pretty much anything. To make confit garlic, you really just need to peel a bunch of garlic and simmer it in oil until it’s tender and golden brown. You can include herbs or chiles to enhance the flavor even more if you’d like. I obviously opted for both, adding a few sprigs of thyme and about 1/8 tsp of red chili flakes. What’s wonderful is that you don’t even need to watch the pot. I mean, don’t leave the house or anything. You don’t want to burn it down. But I totally set it up and went and did something else while it cooked and you can, too.
This time around, I made a small batch of garlic confit. It lasts for ages, though. So next time you’d better believe I’ll be making a huge batch and putting it on literally everything. I may even do a separate recipe post for it. Because it’s just that good.
Do I need any special equipment?
Nah, not really. I used a potato ricer, but it’s not essential. Up until recently, though, I used my stand mixer to make mashed potatoes. I was always happy with the results, though the consistency was admittedly less even. So if you have a potato ricer or masher, use that. If not, a stand or hand mixer will do just fine. Ok, now let’s get down to business.
Vegan Colcannon with Garlic Confit
- 1/2 cup Garlic cloves (Peeled and whole)
- 1 cup Olive oil
- 3 sprigs Thyme
- 1/8 tsp Red chili flakes
- 2 lbs Yukon gold potatoes (Peeled and roughly chopped)
- 1 bunch Dinosaur/Lacinto kale (Stemmed and chopped)
- 1/4 cup Oat milk
- 1/2 tsp Salt (Plus more for your potato water)
- 1/4 tsp Black pepper (Freshly ground)
- Make the garlic confit. To do this, combine the garlic, olive oil, thyme and red chili flakes in a saucepan and simmer for about 30 minutes or until tender and golden brown. When it's done, transfer it all to a jar (oil, too – don't you dare toss it).
- Boil the peeled and chopped potatoes in a medium saucepan with salted water for about 10-20 minutes or until fork tender (the smaller you chop your potatoes, the less time this will take). Drain in a collander when done.
- While the potatoes cook, add 1 tbsp of garlic oil from your confit to a pan. Heat on medium for a few seconds and then add the kale. Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring every so often, until the kale goes limp and releases its water.
- Rice or mash the potatoes into a medium sized bowl. Then add the cooked kale, 1/4 cup oat milk, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper, 2 tbsp garlic oil from the confit, and a bunch of confit garlic cloves (I threw like 7 in there but use your judgement here). Mix to combine with a large spoon. Taste test and add more salt and pepper if necessary.
- To serve, top with more confit garlic!
Whether you make this for St. Patrick’s Day or just dinner, I hope you love it! As always, let me know your thoughts in the comments or on Instagram. I always love hearing from you. Oh, and if you have extra garlic confit left over, you’re welcome. It’ll keep in a jar for quite some time.
For more decadent savory dishes, give these herbed goat cheese soufflés a go!