Thanksgiving is my favourite holiday! Since moving out of the US, is it is thing I wanted most to share with my new friends and family. So, in celebration of my international friend and family, I am sharing some of my favourite Thanksgiving recipes over the next few days!
The first of my favourites is succotash.
Scared to pronounce it? Think of Bugs Bunny and Yosemite Sam—“Sufferin’ Succotash!”
Well, succotash isn’t “sufferin'” at all—it is deliciously living big– and it is even vegan! And it is super yummy! This is a great recipe for Thanksgiving. But don’t limit it to Thanksgiving- it is great as a main dish, or anytime as a side dish to grilled chicken or rissoles.
Succotash is made from the “Three Sisters” of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois). This powerful and influential nation resides in the north eastern part of North America, covering both the US and Canada, including the area of New York where I grew up. The “Three Sisters”- are corn, beans and squash, or pumpkin. Haudenosaunee planted these in a system called “interplanting.” First, they planted corn and waited it for it to start to sprout- about two or three weeks. Then they planted green or wax (yellow) beans. The beans contribute nitrogen to the soil, helping the corn to grow—the corn stalks themselves serves as bean poles. In rows between the corn and beans, they planted squash and pumpkin at the same time they planted the corn. The large leaves of the pumpkin plants shaded the earth, keeping the soil moist. These can be combined in many ways, but my favourite is succotash!
2 cups corn kernels (about 3 ears)
½ cup chopped red onion
1 cup chopped butternut, seeded and skin removed
1 cup chopped red bell pepper or red capsicum
1 cup green beans, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1 cup wax (yellow) beans, chopped into 1 inch pieces**
1 tsp. ground cumin
2 tbsp grapeseed oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed
½ cup vegetable broth (stock)
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh coriander (cilantro)
(Plus a pinch of Cajon seasoning if desired.)
Heat a large skillet or electric frypan to medium high. Add corn, red pepper or capsicum, onion and cumin. Sauté for 5 minutes till slightly blackened, stirring frequently so they don’t stick to the pan. Add butternut, oil and garlic, and sauté for one minute. Reduce heat. Add broth and remaining ingredients. Cook, stirring often, until heated through and pumpkin is tender, but far from mushy. Taste and season with salt, pepper, or Cajon seasoning.
** if you can’t find these beans, you may substitute green beans, or use 1 cup lima beans.