Friday, June 8, 2012

Succotash

Basic succotash is a side dish made using baby lima beans and corn. Pictured here with sliced fresh Creole tomatoes and pan-fried pork chops.

Succotash

Succotash is a dish built around corn and some kind of bean. Here in the Deep South, that is generally baby lima beans, though there are many regional variations across the country. It's a dish that's been around a long time, being taught to the colonists by Native Americans - though they would have originally used a bean other than lima beans, since limas came to us from South America a bit later. The term "succotash" is generally thought to mean boiled corn kernels and originating from the word msickquatash used by the Narragansett Indians of Rhode Island.

This side dish takes on many forms, often utilizing what's fresh and in-season during the summer months especially, but this one, made very simply with baby lima beans and corn, is the basic backbone of them all.


I don't know what it is about this combination of veggies that is so endearing, but it certainly is. Not much out there that could be more simple either. Absolutely best with freshly shelled beans and corn just stripped from the cob, but it's pretty darned good when made with frozen too.

Try seasoning with bacon, or flavoring the cooking water with a bit of salt pork, onion and garlic before adding the beans for a nice boost, add some heavy cream toward the end, or make it a triple succotash by including tomato in some form. No matter how you take it, it'll be good. Here's how to make it.

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Recipe: Succotash

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 5 min |Cook time: 30 min | Yield: About 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients
  • 3 cups of water
  • 2 cups of fresh or frozen baby lima beans
  • 1-1/2 cups of corn cut from the cob, about 2 average ears
  • 2 tablespoons of butter, melted
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
  • Hot pepper sauce, for the table
Instructions

Bring water to a boil, add beans and return to a boil; reduce heat to medium, cover and cook for 25 minutes for fresh, 10 minutes for frozen. Add the corn and continue cooking for another 5 minutes or until beans and corn are fork tender. Drain; toss with butter and season with salt and pepper. Serve with hot pepper sauce at the table.

Variations: Season the boiling water with salt pork, chopped onion and minced garlic before adding the beans. For triple succotash, add in a 15-ounce can of stewed, diced or 10-ounce Rotel diced tomatoes. For a creamy version, drain but retain the cooking water. Return the beans and corn to the pot, add 1/2 cup of heavy cream, and enough of the reserved cooking water back to the pot to completely cover the beans. Cover and simmer for an additional 10 to 15 minutes. Add bacon for extra flavor.

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Posted by on June 8, 2012
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