Halfway through Winter: Saute Scallops and Corn over Fresh Lima Bean Puree

Saute Scallops and Corn over Fresh Lima Bean Puree
Saute Scallops and Corn over Fresh Lima Bean Puree

Halfway through the winter I crave fresh vegetables; start making plans for a herb and flower gardens (this year, they will grow in my apartment’s window still); and think about warmer temperatures. In New York, we still have a few snowfalls and deep freezing temperatures to bear. One particularly warmer winter day, I curiously brought a container of dried lima beans. When I think of lima beans, I think of the frozen or the canned version my father would mix with corn and tomatoes to make succotash. I wasn’t always crazy about that lima bean salad. The ones I picked up in the store were creamy white, not the green beans I was accustomed to seeing growing up.

Fresh lima beans were the original bean planned for a Kale soup. Needing some fresh air, I decided to take a walk outside and to visit a friend. Seeing a group of people engaging in conversation, we starting talking about dinner. I told them about the menu I was preparing, for I was expecting to make a fast soup with fresh lima beans. They quickly told me lima beans take four hours to cook. It was the time of day, people were closing shops and sitting down to eat with their families. I should have started cooking the lima beans earlier. Luckily, I had a can of red kidney beans, and I placed the lima beans (re-hydrated with their outer shells removed ) in the freezer.

Jumping forward to today, after listening to the advice of my friends, I wanted to create a soup with¬†contrasting textures and flavors against the creaminess. Plus, puree soup isn’t considered a substantial dinner in this household. Luckily, I had some frozen scallops and corn in the freezer. If possible, fresh scallops are the better choice. However, I’m quickly creating a recipe to complete other daily tasks.

I quickly defrosted the scallops and corn and proceeded to saute the a mixture. What I have is a sweet, creamy puree. This is almost a vegetarian’s meal, for the puree by itself is delicious. It’s a hearty, light meal perfect for this time of year while waiting for warmer weather, even if it’s a few months ahead.

A special thanks to the ladies in the bookstore for helping me with this recipe!

Rehydrated Lima beans being peeled
Rehydrated Lima beans being peeled

Lima Bean Puree

Ingredients
2 to 3 cups of dried lima beans
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 Italian peppers, roughly chopped
1 fennel bulb, roughly chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
5 cups of chicken stock
The zest of lemon, reserve the juice
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste
Additional chicken stock or buttermilk/cream

Directions
1. Over medium-heat, saute onions until translucent. Add garlic, red pepper, Italian pepper and fennel. Stir for 30 seconds.

2. Add chicken stock, lemon zest, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Cover slightly and bring pot to boil.

3. Bring pot to a simmer by reducing heat to low temperature. Cover pot slightly, leaving a space for heat to escape. Stir frequently, making sure to scrape the bottom of the pan for three to four hours. CAUTION: As the soup gets closer to completion, watch the pot carefully. The soup could burn at the bottom of the pan {Stirring = scrapping bottom of the pan}.

4. Remove and discard bay leaf. Squeeze reserved lemon juice into the soup. Puree all or half the soup with food processor or a blender.

5. Thin soup to desired texture by whisking buttermilk, cream or chicken stock. Adjust seasonings. Place aside and keep warm.

Saute Scallops and Corn

Saute Corn and Scallops
Saute Corn and Scallops

Ingredients
1 shallot, roughly chopped
1 Italian green pepper, roughly chopped
1-1/2 cups of corn (if frozen, thawed; if fresh, blanched)
red pepper flakes, to taste
salt and pepper, to taste
2 to 3 cups of baby scallops, cleaned with ‘foot’ removed

Directions
1. In a medium skillet, saute shallot in olive oil. Add Italian green pepper and corn. Continue to cook for a couple minutes. Do not overcook the vegetables.

2. Add scallops, salt and pepper. Saute for 3 minutes, until scallops turn opaque. Do not overcook the scallops.

Plating: Saute Scallops and Corn over Lemon Lima Bean Soup with Fennel

1. Ladle soup/puree into bowls.

2. Spoon sauteed scallops and corn over the soup.

3. Garnish with Italian parsley. Serve with wheat pita bread toast.

4. Enjoy!

One thought on “Halfway through Winter: Saute Scallops and Corn over Fresh Lima Bean Puree

  • March 13, 2011 at 11:45 pm
    Permalink

    The picture is so inviting.

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