Friday, August 6, 2010

succulent succotash and thoughts on local food

Remember that cartoon character who always said “Suffering succotash!”? I love original exclamations of exasperation. There’s a lady at my church who, when surprised or shocked, says not “Holy Sh**” but a demure “GOD Bless America!”

I digress.

These peas (hah that rhymes!). These peas:

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Frankly, the person at the farmer’s market was wrong when they said they tasted like black eyed peas. They taste like lima beans. I guess some people would be mad about that, because bafflingly some people do not like lima beans. But I stinkin’ love them. So I got out these beans and made succotash, cause I stinkin’ love it!

Traditional succotash is just fresh beans and corn. I’m sure that would’ve been tasty (both my peas and corn were fresh and, extra points, local) but I decided to start with onion and green pepper (the pepper was also local :D)

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Then I added a cup of water, brought it to a boil, and added my beans. I cooked them on medium until they were tender and the water had evaporated, which beautifully coincided about 5 minutes later.

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Then I added my corn, covered, and cooked it.

DO NOT OVERCOOK FRESH CORN. IT IS A FREAKING CRIME. I know people who boil it for ten minutes, which might be necessary for some 6-week-old grocery store specimen but is basically a crime when committed against fresh corn, as this was. I cooked it for one minute, then stirred it, then recovered it and cooked it for another 30 seconds.

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And then I just sprinkled it with a good amount of salt and pepper and it was done. Fresh produce! So easy!

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And more simple fresh loveliness on the side in the form of caprese salad. Tomato and basil. Oil and vinegar. Salt and pepper. The great couples.  

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The next day’s lunch: remember when I figured out that muhammara and hard boiled eggs are an awesome combination?

I decided that experience needed to repeat itself. This time with successful egg sliceage!

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My best friend says my blog would be better if I took shots from further away and included more in the frame. Since my kitchen was reasonably clean and we still have cute zinnias from the party the other week, I tried it this time.

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Thoughts? I’d just as soon not have the trash can in a picture of food…

Anyway, that lunch was marvy. Homemade focaccia with the muhammarra and hard boiled egg; roasted almonds; and wonderful candy-sweet yellow cherry tomatoes. You can see a bit of my counter above and I’ll give you the complete look because it’s just SO beautiful.

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Those tomatoes (I cannot believe how much I paid for them but an adorably awkward roughly 11-year-old boy was giving out samples and was just so earnest about the whole thing that I had to buy them); yummy plummies; more shallots; and peaches.

Now for a book recommendation.

I fancy myself to be doing pretty well in the way of local food: with the exception of a wee bit of onion, all the vegetables and herbs in the above meals are local (as well as the eggs!).

However, I’ve got nothing on these two:

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This couple, who live in Vancouver, decided for one year not to eat anything not within a 100 mile radius of their home.

Those almonds I chomped down? The FLOUR in that focaccia? Salt and pepper? All no-nos.

It’s a really great look at local food, a bit of the background behind it. It’s also a great how-to manual, because they pulled it off despite living somewhere we all think of as, well… cold. Finally, they are both good writers and just have good stories (like one involving a naked encounter with a bear at their summer cabin). I recommend.

6 comments:

MelindaRD said...

Glad you are enjoying such yummy local produce. I actually do like lima beans. I try to do local, and here it is both easy and not easy. Because I am on an island, if it can be grown here, then I get it local, but somethings do not grow here and they come from mainland Portugal or Brazil. The commissary brings in from Germany, and I have little choice about that option. but there are some organic farms here with some yummy produce. I also love the local cheese and yogurt from the cows here. Oh yes, the fish I eat is local and fresh, and with that I am now unbelievably spoiled.

Megan D said...

That book sounds exactly like "Animal Vegetable Miracle"! I loved it, but it made me feel guilty for... basically everything I eat. We can't be all perfect though, right?! And your lunch looks amaazing! I think you sould include a closeup and a wide view because you have a purdy kitchen :)

Kaz said...

Your succotash doesn't look like it's suffering at all. It looks really yummy, in fact! Hah, that lady sounds so cute! :D

I think your house is lovely, so maybe try to casually integrate the macros with the wider shots?

That book sounds interesting. I don't think I could ever go 100% local, but I admire those who do strive to make an effort to do so. =)

Rhea (Greek Feaster) said...

All I hear is DAFFY DUCK!
Looks good, Greek sista. ;)

Kelsey said...

i only had succotash for the first time about a month and a half ago and it was one of the most fabulous side dishes ive ever tasted!! and its very healthy too!

xoxo

PJ said...

oh i love fresh seasonal produce. even a simple preparation is so delicious when the ingredients are fresh. love your succotash and the book sounds interesting.