Remember last November when I mentioned a passing interest in regional food traditions? I don't think I ever followed that post up, but a couple of weeks later the Crooked Road cookbook I mentioned showed up on my doorstep (thanks, mom). Well, this has spawned a (slowly) growing collection of regional and/or historic cookbooks.
I picked up the above title while thrifting in Hagerstown on Saturday. It begins with an introduction to the region and its history and is chock full of recipes and little tidbits on things like why a certain recipe was important. Let's be honest. A lot of the recipes look pretty gross. There are recipes in there involving animal body parts that I never want to get to know. Still, I was determined to find something to whip up.
Enter the winter succotash! I've included the recipe below as it appears in the cookbook with the strikeouts and red reflecting my modifications. Needless to say, I wasn't exactly going for historical accuracy. :-)
2 quarts cold water
1 can corn
salt and pepper to taste
Parboil the beans, then put in a kettle with the cold water and salt pork. (1/4 lb butter may be used instead of the pork). Cook for 3 hours, then add the corn, melted butter and flour. Cook 3/4 of an hour longer. Season with salt and pepper. Heat the cream and add just before serving.
I pretty much followed none of the actual cooking instructions, since I'm pretty sure they're based on using dry beans. I cooked the lima beans according to the directions on the package, draining them before adding in the corn, melted butter and flour. I cooked the mixture an additional 5-6 minutes before adding salt, pepper and a splash of cream.
Let's just say the Nova Scotians know how to take the healthy out of vegetables.
P.S. Speaking of food culture, I pulled out one of my grandma's seasonal potholders this weekend.