Wednesday, August 18, 2010

{Sufferin' Succotash}

Last night {after a stressful day} I went and got a hamburger for dinner and it was gross. It had no taste, was oddly shaped, had artificial grill marks {with no signs that this burger even touched a grill} and I started having flashbacks of the movie Food Inc - have you seen it? If not, I absolutely recommend you watch but I must admit that sometimes it's just better not to know. However, since I've seen it {and now I know better}, this experience of the awful artificial beef hamburger has definitely got me thinking about eliminating meat again from my diet - not going to go cold turkey - just slowly getting rid of it and making better food choices.

Once I got home I went to one of my favorite foodie sites, Smitten Kitchen, looking for some healthy summer recipes using fresh, local ingredients...and of course I found a ton. This one, however {Summer Succotash with Bacon and Garlic Croutons}, stuck out and this weekend I'm definitely going to the farmers market to get lots of veggies so I can try it out.

Smitten Kitchen 2
{Corn, lima beans, cranberry beans....hmmm, not sure about those, and tomatoes}
Smitten Kitchen 3

Smitten Kitchen 4

Smitten Kitchen 1
Summer Succotash with Bacon and Garlic Croutons

1 pound fresh shell beans in pod or 1 cup frozen baby lima beans (I used 1/2 pound fresh cranberry beans, 1/2 pound fresh lima beans) - I think I may substitute the cranberry beans for black beans instead...

1/4 pound bacon (about 4 slices) - maybe I'll do 2 slices - I said baby steps, no cold turkey remember? lol!

1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small Vidalia onion or other sweet onion, chopped

1 large garlic clove, minced

3/4 pound cherry tomatoes (about 1 1/2 pints), halved

Fresh kernels from 4 ears corn

1 tablespoon sherry vinegar, plus more to taste

1/4 cup packed small fresh basil leaves

1/4 cup packed small fresh arugula leaves

Shell fresh beans if using. In a small saucepan of boiling salted water cook beans over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until just tender, about 5 minutes for fresh or frozen lima beans, 20 to 25 for fresh cranberry beans. In a sieve drain beans and rinse under cold running water to stop cooking. Set aside.

In a skillet cook bacon over moderate heat until crisp. Drain bacon on paper towels and crumble. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon bacon fat from skillet. Add oil to bacon fat in skillet and cook onion over moderate heat, stirring, until just softened. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Add tomatoes, corn, and vinegar and cook, stirring, until tomatoes just begin to lose their shape. Remove skillet from heat and gently stir in cooked beans and half of bacon. Cool succotash to room temperature and gently stir in basil and arugula, and salt, pepper and additional sherry vinegar to taste. Toss with croutons (below, if using) and sprinkle with remaining bacon before serving.

Garlic Croutons

1 garlic clove, peeled and halved

1 round loaf crusty bread

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil


Cut three 1-inch-thick slices from middle of loaf and brush bread with oil. Lightly oil a well-seasoned ridged grill pan and heat over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Grill bread until golden brown on both sides. Alternately, you can run toasts under the broiler for a minute. Remove from heat and immediately rub bread both sides with cut side of garlic and sprinkle with salt. Cut into cubes and toss into succotash.

Sounds yummy huh? I'll let you know how it turns out...

Final Signature


  1. Since you know I have been feeling the same way lately, here are a few good vegetarian cookbooks that I have found...

    Vegetarian Classics: 300 Essential and Easy Recipes for Every Meal- The author uses some shortcuts on things that I think are easy (falafel, gnocchi, etc), but the ideas are solid.

    How To Cook Everything Vegetarian- It's like a textbook of vegetarian cooking basics, and a great reference tool. The non-fried version of gobi manchurian (indo-chinese cauliflower dish) is AWESOME. The fried version is delicious, too :)

    The Accidental Vegetarian- I will admit that I haven't cooked anything out of this yet, and that he too takes some unnecessary shortcuts, but the photos are beautiful and the recipes overall look great.

  2. Genius - thanks Eleanor!! The indo-chinese cauliflower dish sounds amazing, and yes I would assume the fried versions is just as delicious. :-)


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