Tuesday, July 15, 2008
it's not summer without succotash
This is a dish my family prepares every summer when the farmers' market starts up. Every time I make it, I wonder to myself why I don't make it every day. Every vegetable is in its utmost perfect state in this dish: the peas simmered with simple salt water, the corn sauteed to near-caramelization, the tomatoes marinated at room temp with fresh herbs, and the okra, fried, of course.
If the ingredient list looks daunting, just know that you already have most of it, and the rest is just a stop at the market away. Do not even think about substituting black-eye peas for the pink-eye...we're talking a different species. Purple hull peas are an acceptable substitute. A lot of this can be made ahead. All that really needs to happen last minute is frying the okra.
Please make this. It is honestly the best thing you will put in your mouth this summer. Heck-this IS summer.
1 lb pink eye peas
1 tbsp salt
6 spoonfuls of mayo
juice of one lemon (or two small)
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
5 ears corn
3 tomatoes, cut into 16ths
tbsp fresh oregano
about 30 okra
3 cups flour
1/3 cup milk
tbsp cajun seasoning
tbsp seasoning salt
vegetable oil for frying
8 slices of prosciutto
Simmer peas with in water with tbsp salt for two hours.
Whisk together mayo, chives, lemon juice and season to taste.
Whisk together olive oil and balsamic vinegar (3 parts oil to one part vinegar) as well as the oregano. Marinate tomatoes in dressing, turning occasionally.
Shuck corn, cut the kernels off the cob, and saute until dangerously golden with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Keep warm
Combine flour, seasoning salt, cajun seasoning, and heavy shakes of salt and pepper in a double lined plastic bag. Shake to combine. Cut off the tops of the okra. Whisk together eggs and milk. Soak okra in the egg/milk mixture, shake off extra, toss into the bag to cover with flour mixture, then fry over high heat until golden. Keep warm.
Fry up the prosciutto until crisp.
Plate the peas, then the corn, then tomatoes on top of that. Place the okra around the sides. Top with prosciutto, drizzle with mayo dressing and enjoy.