As a kid I always wanted to be part of what my grandmother referred to as “the green bean team.” It was something she probably made up to make me feel good about finishing my green beans, but whatever, it worked. I still love polishing off a pile of green beans and I always think of Nanaw when I eat them. Succotash was another one of those side dishes that didn’t require much coaxing to get me to eat. As far as I can remember I’ve always liked lima beans. I don’t have a sweet story for why though, so I started with green beans. Fingers crossed Baby Kurtanich will inherit my a.) gullibility and b.) appreciation of vegetables.
Succotash, the simple combination of buttery sweet corn and creamy lima beans, is the stuff backyard barbecues are made of. This is my attempt to elevate my favorite summer side to main dish status.
- 6 oz jumbo pasta shells (about 24)
- 15 oz. ricotta cheese
- 1 cup shredded parmesan cheese, divided
- 1 oz crumbly goat cheese
- 1½ tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 shallots, minced
- 1½ cups corn, fresh off the cob, or thawed from frozen
- ¾ cup lima beans, if frozen, thawed
- freshly ground black pepper
- fresh dill
- fresh parsley
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large pot, set water to boil for the pasta.
- Meanwhile, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the shallots and sauté until they become fragrant. Add 1 cup of the corn and the lima beans and sauté for 4-6 minutes. Stir in 1 teaspoon salt and some freshly ground black pepper. Set aside in a bowl to cool.
- Once the water is boiling add 1 teaspoon salt and the pasta. Cook for 6-8 minutes, just until it is al dente.
- In the bowl of a food processor add the ricotta, ¾ cup parmesan, remaining ½ cup corn, 1-2 tablespoons fresh parsley, 1-2 tablespoons fresh dill, 1 teaspoon salt and some freshly ground black pepper. Process until combined.
- Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish. When the pasta is done cooking, drain and begin to fill the shells. Pinch the shells on the short ends to get them to open up and spoon a few tablespoons of the filling into each. Place them in the baking dish once filled.
- Bake for about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup parmesan and goat cheese. Return to the oven for a few more minutes until the cheese has melted a little.
- Serve with a little more black pepper, parsley and dill.