Market Succotash

Market Succotash

You know, it’s always nice to have dinner with a little nostalgia.  Cooking new things is great – I try to do that as much as possible.  But it’s those dinners that take me back to bygone years that really excited my palate.  They say hunger makes the best spice, which is true.  However, fond memories aren’t too far behind.  That’s why this week, I’m riffing on a Southern classic: Succotash.  And I’m serving it with my own take on vinegary greens.

{Recipe after the jump.}

Succotash usually consists of a mixture of lima beans and corn.  At times, you’ll see it made with other ingredients as well, such as tomatoes.  It’s a classic Southern dish, but it has roots all over the country.  This particular take on the dish incorporates some of the fresh end of summer ingredients that are still available at the market.  After all, fresh, seasonal cooking is really what Red Hook Community Farms is about.  Since squash, tomatoes, and corn are still fresh this time of year, this recipe is a great way to use them before they are gone.  They could be mixed with any bean really, but I’ve chosen white beans only for its tasty tasty convenience.  If you like, and if you can find them, fresh fava beans would be great.  Otherwise, almost any bean would work well.

In the south, another favorite is vinegary greens.  Since these are again coming back into season, we’ll do a quick and easy take on those today that take no time to cook.  And we’ll be serving all of this with a white bean vinaigrette that livens up the entire dish. — Adam Gregory

Market Succotash

Servings: 6

Cooking time: around 45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • ⅓ can (16 oz) Cannolini or White Beans and
  • ⅔ can (16 oz) of Cannolini or White Beans (or a substitute of your choice)
  • 3 CSA Summer Squash
  • 2 ears CSA Corn
  • 1 container CSA Cherry Tomatoes
  • 1 bunch CSA Chard
  • 3 cloves CSA Garlic
  • 1 tbs White Balsamic Vinegar
  • juice of 1 ½ Lemons
  • zest of 1 Lemon
  • 1 tbs grainy Dijon Mustard
  • ¼ cup chicken broth
  • ¼ cup Olive Oil for dressing
  • 1 tbs + 2 tbs +2 tbs Olive Oil for cooking vegetables
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Directions:

1)    Start by washing all of your vegetables.  Most of the cooking time for this recipe involves preping all of these different ingredients.  The actual cooking time is very short, so make sure everything is ready to go before you start the succotash and greens.

2)    For the vinaigrette, drain and wash your Cannolini beans.  Mince one clove of garlic.  Over low heat, let the garlic and 1 tbs of olive oil slowly heat until light brown.  While this is happening, zest 1 lemon and juice 1 ½ lemons.  Add the zest of juice to a blender along with 1 tbs dijon mustard and ¼ cup olive oil.

3)    Once the garlic is lightly browned, add ⅓ of the Cannolini beans, raise the heat to medium, and cook for two minutes.  Add the chicken broth and let simmer for 3 minutes.  Add this mixtures to the blender.  Blend until smooth.  Set aside.

4)    Either prep a different kind of bean for your succotash, or simply set aside the remaining ⅔ of a can of Cannolini beans for your succotash.

5)    Remove the leaves from the chard.  Using the chiffonade technique that I’ve described before for cutting herbs, take the chard leaves, laying them flat one atop the other, and roll them into a cigar shape.  Now, make very thin slices across the rolled up chard.  You’ll want very thin slices (1/8 thick or less) to make sure it softens instantly when briefly cooked.  Set aside.  Thinly slice the chard stems.  Set aside.

6)    Slice the ends off the squash.  Cut into a medium dice – something around the size of your beans.  Set aside.

7)    Slice the container of cherry tomatoes in half.  Set aside.

8)    Remove the husks and silk from the corn.  Holding one end of the corn (preferably the stem if still attached), place the other end of the corn in the bottom of a large bowl or over a large shallow container to catch any flying corn kernels.  Using a knife, carefully cut downward at an angle to remove the kernels from the corn cob.  Once all kernels have been removed, use the back of the knife to scrape against the cob, pushing the remaining corn pulp into the bowl.  Set aside.

9)    Mince two cloves of garlic.  Set aside.

10)    Now that the prep work is done, we’re almost ready to eat!  Using a large saute pan, or two medium saute pans over high heat, heat two tbs of olive oil.  When hot, add the summer squash and chard stems and saute 3-5 minutes.

11)    Meanwhile, in another saute pan, heat 2 tbs olive oil slowly over medium low heat with 2 minced cloves of garlic.

12)    Add the corn and beans to the succotash mixture and cook another 2-3 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.  Finally, add the cherry tomatoes, toss the mixture together, and remove from the heat.

13)    When the garlic has very lightly browned, remove the pan from the heat and toss with the thinly sliced chard.  Warm through and toss with the white balsamic vinegar.

14)    To plate, spread some of your white bean vinaigrette on the plate.  Make a nice pile of your summer market succotash, and top with your vinegary chard greens.  Your meal is ready, simple as that.

Enjoy!

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