Jun 23, 2009

sweet corn succotash

If you've been reading my blog you know I am a sucker for fresh sweet corn. Last week, as I was looking for a fresh vegetable salad that would go well with a combination of other salad's and main dishes I came across this succotash in a former issue of Food & Wine Magazine. It originally caught my eye because of the sweet corn, but then it also called for okra, another favorite. Alas, it is not the season for okra in Northern California. But I quickly remembered a wonderful package that I received earlier in the week from my brother who is currently working on a farm in the central valley.

This package not only had two beautiful bouquets of dried lavender, but it also came abundant with summer squash from his farm. Summer squash is a vegetable that has a very mild flavor and doesn't require long cooking, thus it was a perfect "in-season" substitute for the okra.

Recipe for Sweet Corn Succotash
Adapted from Food & Wine, August 2008

2 cups fresh green peas*
1 thick slice of bacon, finely diced
1 small white onion, finely chopped
3/4 pound summer squash, coarsely chopped
3 medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped
3 ears of corn, kernels cut off
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cups slivered basil leaves

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the peas until tender, approximately 5 minutes and drain. In a deep skillet fry up the diced bacon over medium high heat until browned. Add the onion and cook until just softened. Add the squash and cook for 7-8 minutes, until soft.

Add the tomatoes, corn and peas and season with salt and pepper. Simmer and stir as the flavors begin to come together. Just before serving add the butter and basil and stir the butter into the vegetables as it melts. Serve.**

Alison's Notes:
*I could not find fresh green peas in the shells so I picked up a couple cups of peas from the salad bar at the local grocery. This also saved time when it came to putting together the succotash, no need to boil the peas.
**This dish was excellent served both warm and as left overs cold out of the fridge the following day.

Local Ingredients:
Sweet corn - Farmer's Market or finding it in many grocery markets right now.
Summer squash - all over the Farmer's Market from early through late summer.
Tomatoes - available at select Farmer's Market's, I purchased USA grown from the local grocery.
Basil - picked from our garden, however this can be found in many grocery's and at Farmer's Markets.
Onion - Farmer's Market or grocery.

(photography by: alison clayshulte)

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