Sweet Potato Colcannon with Bacon

March 21st, 2015

Sweet Potato Colcannon 4 Better

This casserole would have been the perfect side dish for St. Patrick’s Day.  Colcannon is an Irish dish which usually contains potatoes and cabbage or kale.  Making it with sweet potatoes and adding a kick of cayenne pepper and bacon elevates it from drab to very interesting indeed.  The original recipe called for pancetta, but I think the bacon does just as well. We had already had our corned beef and cabbage with boiled potatoes and carrots when I found this recipe on the FOOD52 website.  Since corned beef was still on sale, I bought another one and made it along side this and a scrumptious sauerkraut salad.  It was a new take on the St. Paddy’s Day menu.

Sweet Potato Colcannon with Bacon 2V

I am loving my new Staub cookware that I won from FOOD52.  The quality and sturdiness are unsurpassed.  But then I am also sold on the less expensive Lodge cast iron cookware.  My Le Creuset enameled cookware is also put to good use in my kitchen, but the enamel does stain after time no matter how well I clean it.  I would be interested in your thoughts on this matter.  What about copper?

Sweet Potato Colcannon with Bacon 3

I hate it when I get in the picture.  I loved this shot of my sweet potatoes until I saw my orange glad self in the reflection in the spoon.  Oh well.  The potatoes are still very photogenic and I highly recommend this dish.  Next time I will add even more cayenne pepper.  More bacon too.  Hope you like it as much as I did.  We are packing.  One more week until we return to North Carolina.


  • 1/3pound kale, rinsed well and stripped of coarse stems
  • 1 1/2pounds sweet potato, peeled and cut in 1/2-inch cubes
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 slices of bacon, diced and fried until crisp
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1/8teaspoon cayenne powder, plus more as desired
  • 1/2cup half-and-half
  1. Place kale in salted boiling water for 8 minutes, until tender and bright green. Reserving the boiling water, remove with a slotted spoon, drain well and squeeze out excess water, then chop fine.
  2. Boil the sweet potato in the water used for the kale for 15 minutes, covered, or until tender. Drain and pass through a potato ricer or food mill, into a large, heat-proof pot. (Note: If you have neither a ricer nor mill, push potato through a sieve or otherwise be sure to mash thoroughly until smooth.)
  3. Add the chopped kale to the sweet potato. Season with salt and pepper to taste, keeping in mind that the inclusion of cayenne and bacon later in the recipe will boost the levels of both salt and spice; be judicious.
  4. In a medium skillet over moderate heat, cook the bacon until crisp. Remove using a slotted spoon and let drain on a paper towel.
  5. In the same pan you used to cook the bacon, melt the butter. Add onion and cayenne and sauté over medium heat, until onion is translucent and has lost its crunch. Set aside.
  6. In a small saucepan, heat half-and-half, then beat it into the sweet potato-kale mixture (I just used a fork, which worked best). Add the bacon. Add the onion and the fat from the pan. Combine all ingredients well, and serve warm.
  7. This dish may be prepared in advance. In fact, it tastes even better the next day. Also, try pressing the colcannon into a pie plate and chilling overnight: The next day, cut into wedges and fry up in additional butter or oil to accompany a breakfast of scrambled eggs.

Printable Recipe

Chicken Over Warm Kale and Asparagus Salad

January 8th, 2014

Chicken over warm kale 1


To continue the Greens of Winter theme, I made this flavorful and simple chicken dish that utilizes convenient store-bought products.  It was a featured recipe in Publix’s Aprons Simple Meal Program.  Every week they feature recipes from products on their aisles.  All of the ingredients are gathered at the cooking station so that, if, after sampling the dish and it is to your liking, you can gather all of the ingredients to make it; all in one place.  Genius!

Chicken over Warm Kale ingredients


Here are the major players in the dish.  I forgot to include the red wine vinegar and the sugar, but you get the general idea.  The Aprons Program is a wonderful idea for harried cooks and working families who have very little time to shop, but still want to serve their families home-cooked meals.  This was almost just as simple as ordering a pizza or stopping for take-out chinese food.  Nutritionally there is no contest. It is low in fat and full of healthy ingredients.

Chicken over warm kale V2

The only addition I made to this meal was a pot of mashed potatoes.  A brown and wild rice mix would also be good.  I think we are off to a great start in the New Year.


1 ( 3 oz ) package shallots, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped
1/2 lb fresh asparagus spears
1 3/4 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 1/4 teaspoon garlic/herb seasoning, divided
2 tablespoon canola oil
1 pint grape tomatoes
3 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 ( 5 oz ) container kale salad blend
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

PREP: Chop shallots and basil.  Cut asparagus into 1-inch long pieces, removing tough root end.

1. Preheat large saute pan on medium-high 2-3 minutes.  Season chicken with 1 teaspoon garlic/herb seasoning (wash hands).  Place oil in pan, then add chicken; cook 4-5 minutes on each side or until browned.

2. Reduce heat to low.  Stir in tomatoes and shallots; cook and stir 2-3 minutes or until tomatoes are softened.

3. Combine vinegar and sugar, then stir into tomato mixture; cook 8-10 minutes, turning chicken occasionally, or until liquid has reduced by about one-half and chicken is 165 degrees F.  Remove chicken from pan; let stand 5 minutes to rest.

4. Stir kale, basil, asparagus, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon seasoning into tomato mixture; cook 1 minute or until salad is wilted.  Transfer salad to serving plates; slice chicken and arrange on top of salad.  Sprinkle with cheese; serve.  Serves 4.

Printable recipe

© Penny Klett, Lake Lure Cottage Kitchen. All rights reserved.