Lima beans are my least favorite vegetable. Maybe it’s the way I’ve had them prepared? Maybe it’s because I just haven’t acquired a taste for them? If they are in front of me, I will eat them, because they are food. And in my opinion, food should never be taken for granted or wasted. But, for the most part, I avoid lima beans.
When I think of the American classic succotash, I think of lima beans. Recently, I was doing a little research, and discovered that sometimes kidney beans are used. And with that in mind, I thought, “I can’t wait to get this succotash party started!” In many ways, it is the perfect recipe for summer, because it incorporates summer’s bounty—fresh herbs, sweet corn, green peppers and tomatoes.
The recipe works well as a side or an entire meal. To make it a meal, serve it over a hearty grain, like barley, or with thick crusty bread. It cooks up in 20 minutes or less, so it works great when it is very hot outside or when you are tight on time. While you can use dried herbs (½-1 tsp dried basil, instead of the fresh), I would recommend sticking with fresh herbs. They bring a pleasing freshness to the flavor and an exquisite aroma that cannot otherwise be achieved. For a variation, add some summer squash or zucchini, or use fresh thyme instead of fresh basil.
Kidney Bean Succotash
1 medium sweet onion, chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 Tbsp vegan butter
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
1 15 ounce can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups sweet corn
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
Salt and black pepper, to taste
1. In a large skillet, add onions, garlic, vegan butter and a dash of salt over medium heat. Sauté for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft. Then, add the green bell pepper, and sauté another 5 minutes.
2. Stir in kidney beans, sweet corn and cherry tomatoes. Sauté over medium heat for 3 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper. Stir in 1 Tbsp of fresh basil, and top with the remaining 1 Tbsp of fresh basil. Taste, and adjust seasonings, if needed. Serve immediately. To make it a meal, serve over your favorite grain (barley, quinoa, etc).