I experienced the most wonderful birthday present this summer; one of our daughters bought us a dinner at a winery in Forest Grove that was served outside under the sparkling sunlight with sweeping views of wine country. The food was fantastic, the wine pairings perfect and the evening luscious. The whole experience evoked a deep gratitude for our land, Oregon, that we call home.
The meal was a 7 course affair that was cooked right on the spot and served family style at long communal tables. They were careful to include dishes that were gulten free, which was nice. It was quite fun to chat with our neighbors, who all turned out to be foodies, (no surprise) and take in the scenery and delightful offerings. My favorite dish, which was really hard to choose since they were all delish, was the succotash. Succotash?? Who would of thunk it?
Succotash is an ancient dish that originally came from the NE Native American tribes and usually contains corn and shelled beans or peas of some sort and is served in a creamy sauce. The creamy sauce can be made with cream or just be plain ole butter, and lots of it. (No wonder I loved it)
It can easily be made with whatever you have one hand that’s over abundant. That’s how it became wildly popular in the great depression and how it became wildly unpopular in the 70s where it was served up overcooked and shriveled. But let me tell you, it is a revelation if made right!
I know that many paleo/primal folks don’t eat corn but I feel that when it is the height of summer and the corn is organic and fresh, it is a whole food that is worthy of a treat. I mean let’s get real, bread or corn? Which one would be better for you as a treat?? I used scralet runner beans that were fairly mature for the shelled bean part and organic grass fed butter.
I have taken liberties with Chef Pascal’s succotash recipe that he graciously shared with me by the addition of our local veggies and the subtraction of one stick of butter. If you would like more butter, by all means, don’t let me stop you. I’m sure you could sub in coconut oil but I’m not sure if it would taste so…….buttery. Enjoy the rest of our luscious late summer, swimming in veggies and butter.
- 3 TBLS of coconut or avocado oil or other high heat oil
- 8 ounces of andouille or some sort of sausage, sliced (optional)
- 1 medium sweet onion, diced
- 2 cups of fresh cut sweet organic corn
- 3 to 4 cloves of minced garlic
- 3 medium sized over ripe tomatoes
- 1 cup of fresh peas or shelled beans of some sort
- 1 medium zucchini diced medium
- 1 red bell pepper, diced small
- 1-2 TBLS of minced fresh basil
- 1 stick of grass fed organic unsalted butter, cubed
- 2 tsps of smoked paprika
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Prep all your lovely farm fresh veggies, sausage and herbs. Puree the tomatoes and garlic in a blender and set aside. Take out a big skillet that is deep and large in diameter. Heat up the oil and sauté the sausage over medium heat till lightly brown and then add the onions. Sauté for a few more minutes till the onions become fragrant and then add the pureed tomatoes and sweet corn. (If you are using green beans, add them here) Bring this delicious mix to a simmer, lower the heat to medium and keep simmering until the corn is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Add the peas or beans, zucchini, bell pepper and the basil and simmer for about 5 more minutes then add the smoked paprika, salt and pepper to taste and turn off heat. Now for the indulgent part, stir in your butter till it is melted and starts to create a creamy consistency. Taste, lucky you, and add more seasonings to your liking. Eat with relish and grunts of delight.
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