I have a vivid memory of sometime in the third grade, around Thanksgiving, when we were learning about the origins of the holiday and there was some sort of reenactment of the feast that included real food. I do not recall turkey or cranberries but I do know that there was some succotash, lima beans and corn, and that I was the lucky one who got to finish eating the bowl after the play was done. I also recall that I was shocked that no one was fighting me for the leftovers and sitting in a corner I proceeded to shovel spoonful after spoonful of that starchy deliciousness into my belly. I have loved the combination of corn, lima beans and butter ever since.
This soup was whipped up a few evenings ago when the chilly night air was invading the house and I realized that I had a bonanza of frozen corn-off-the-cob that I had made this summer for just such an evening. I added the homemade bacon bits because the bacon was next to the corn in the freezer and I could tell they wanted to come out to play together. Feel free to leave it out and make it a vegetarian soup.
Sadly, I have only come across fresh lima beans once in my life, nearly 15 years ago at a farmers’ market in Indiana, so there was no stash of fresh-frozen lima beans for this soup. If you ever see them in the market, snatch them up; they’re better than fresh peas!
1 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
4 strips bacon or pancetta, minced (optional)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large red potato, diced
2 cups corn stock or vegetable stock
2 cups water
1 1/2 cups corn kernels
1 1/2 cups lima beans, frozen
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon butter
Saute bacon or pancetta in olive oil until meat is crisp; remove from pot and set aside. Place onion in pot and saute until soft; add celery and cook another 3-5 minutes, until soft. Add stock, water and potatoes and bring to boil. Cover and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add corn and lima beans and return to boil. Cook covered for another 5 minutes. Add thyme, salt, pepper and butter and cook another 2 minutes. Serve.
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