[Recipe 2] CHICKEN SUCCOTASH SOUP
Our boys love vintage Warner Bros cartoons, particularly The Road Runner Show, which is often a source of inspiration for kooky craft activities such as trap-making; and cardboard creations like these candles my 7 year old made to adorn the Christmas table last year.
Sylvester and Tweety are much-loved too, so for a long time we’ve wanted to try Sufferin’ Succotash. We’re a corn-lovin’ family, and corn is in fact one of only four vegetables the 4-year old will eat without whining.
My recipe is based loosely on one found at epicurious.com which features cherry tomatoes, and is more like a cooked salsa. Most of the other succotash recipes I came across contained – yoikes – slabs of butter and cream. I omitted the bacon, serving it up instead in wraps with crumbed whiting fillets. Yummmmm. This one is a keeper.
The wraps with crumbed whiting and succotash lead to a beautiful (even if I do say so myself) soup we enjoyed later in the week. I made a large batch of the succotash, and reserved half. Whipped it out of the fridge on a work-night, fried up some chopped chook thigh fillets, threw in some stock, and made a delicious Chicken succotash soup in 20 minutes, including prep time. Check out the ♦ orange diamonds in the recipe for hints on how much succotash to set aside for the soup.
The Tapatío hot sauce in the first photo is from the fabulous Oasis Bakery, which is worth the drive although it’s a money vacuum. I’ve been there many times, planning to pick up one or two items; and returning home with bulging bags of goodies. Why oh why do they place those honeyed Lebanese doughnuts right next to the cash register?
[Recipe 1] Wraps with crumbed whiting and succotash
Ingredients for crumbed whiting (serves 4):
500g (1 lb) King George Whiting (or other firm white fish) fillets
½ cup plain (all-purpose) flour for dusting
2 eggs, beaten
1½ cups fresh or dry breadcrumbs
Olive oil for shallow frying
Mountain bread wraps, tortillas or home-made flatbread, to serve
Ingredients for succotash (serves 4 for 2 meals):
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large red onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
600g (3 punnets/4 cups/21 oz) cherry or perino tomatoes, halved
5 cups fresh, cooked, corn kernels (cut from 8 cobs/ears, boiled for 8 minutes)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 x 400g (15 oz) cans butter beans (lima beans), rinsed, drained (or 4 cups cooked beans)
½ cup fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Dust whiting fillets in flour. Dip into beaten eggs, then coat in breadcrumbs. Refrigerate, covered, until required.
Heat oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over medium heat. Cook the onion for 4–5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add tomatoes and corn, and cook, stirring, until tomatoes just begin to lose their shape. Remove saucepan from heat and gently stir in lemon juice and beans.
Allow succotash to cool to room temperature and stir in coriander.
Season to taste.
♦ Reserve half the succotash, about 5½ cups (1.2kg), for the Chicken succotash soup. Drain off any juices into this reserved succotash too.
Meanwhile, heat oil and shallow-fry the crumbed whiting fillets in batches for about 2–3 minutes each side, until light golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper.
Serve each wrap or flatbread with one or two whiting fillets and a good mound of succotash. Roll to enclose, and serve immediately.
[Recipe 2] Chicken succotash soup
Ingredients (serves 4–6):
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 skinless chicken thigh fillets (250g/½ lb), chopped
5½–6 cups chicken stock
1 bay leaf
♦ 5½ cups (1.2kg) reserved succotash
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fresh chopped parsley, coriander (cilantro) or basil to serve
Heat olive oil a medium-sized saucepan, and gently fry the chicken for 6–8 minutes, until just cooked through. Add chicken stock and bay leaf.
♦ Add reserved succotash.
Bring to the boil. Turn down heat and simmer for 15–20 minutes. Discard bay leaf.
Using a stick blender, give the soup four or five whizzes only, to help it thicken. Don’t blend it completely smooth – be sure to leave lots of chunks for texture. Season.
Ladle chicken succotash soup into bowls, scatter with parsley, and serve with crusty bread.
Fussy kid tip: My 4-year old was very happy to eat the wraps with fish, sliced avocado, grated carrot and plain cooked corn kernels. He LOVED the chicken succotash soup, but I needed to give his portion a few more whizzes with the stick blender, so it resembled baby food, his favourite soup consistency.