I’ve always loved vegetable mixes, especially that popular mix of corn, carrots and Lima beans called succotash. To me, the three vegetables combined were always more interesting than they were served individually. And then, of course, there is the name “succotash”, which always seemed fun to say, especially if you use your best Sylvester the Cat voice and say “Sufferin’ Succotash.” But I digress.
This succotash has a lovely, summer Southern flavor based on vegetables that are plentiful here in late summer North Carolina. It is a delicious and vitamin rich side dish, but served on top of organic rice, grits or corn bread, it is also a hearty, vegetarian main dish. This version centers on okra, tomatoes, field peas and onions, all grown within 50 miles. So delicious, so healthy, so summer. Sufferin’? Not hardly–how about celebratin’ succotash?
Southern Succotash (makes 4 entree portions or 6 side dish portions)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 sweet, organic onion, peeled and sliced
- 4 cloves organic garlic, peeled and chopped
- 1 quart baby okra, washed and trimmed
- 1 quart cherry tomatoes (we used purple splash)
- 1 quart pink eye field peas (any field pea or butter bean would work)
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- Kosher or sea salt and ground black pepper to taste
- In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
- Add the onions and sauté until just softened, about 3 minutes.
- Add the garlic and cook 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add the tomatoes and okra. Cook until tomatoes start to release their juices, about 5 minutes.
- Stir well and add the fresh field peas and thyme.
- Reduce heat , cover and simmer for about 15 minutes or until peas are just tender. If mixture becomes dry, add about a half cup of water and continue cooking.