Succotash is a southern side dish mostly made of corn and beans. Sweet corn is something we all look forward to during summer, when those golden ears begin to pop-up at farm stands and markets everywhere. Yellow, white or blue cobs with concentrated sweet kernels are well represented during the season, which can be enjoyed straight from the cob, or cut-off and sauteed in a pan with other seasonal ingredients.
When we were kids, we grew our own corn in the backyard during the summer. Even though corn isn’t very expensive, my mother wanted us to learn how vegetables were grown, and corn was a fairly easy crop, and hardy enough to handle kids playing in the yard. I remember how fun it was to pull a fresh cob, shuck it and steam it up in a pot of boiling salted water (with my mother’s assistance of course). It was one of the best summertime activities.
Side dishes, like corn, are a necessity with grilled meat, chicken or fish and succotash makes a great accompaniment to complete any meal and satisfies even the finickiest of vegetables eaters. I added crispy bacon to this recipe because the flavors of corn and bacon are something my family enjoys, but you can leave it out if you’re a vegetarian. If fresh corn is a challenge to find quite yet, frozen corn is a great replacement because it’s flash frozen straight from harvest, and just as sweet.
1 onion, diced
1 bell pepper, any color – diced
3 cups fresh or frozen corn
1/2 cup canned black or pinto beans
1 teaspoon dried thyme or 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
5 slices cooked bacon
1/4 cup fresh parsley
olive oil for cooking
salt & pepper
- In a large saute pan add 2 teaspoons olive oil and place over medium heat. Add onion and bell pepper and saute for 3 minutes. Add corn and beans, stir to combine. Add thyme, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Continue to cook for 4 minutes.
- Remove from heat and sprinkle top of skillet with bacon and parsley. Serve immediately. Enjoy!