Julia Reed’s Succotash

Many like to write about their love of cast iron, and the familial bond that is shared as it passes from one generation to the next. I have treasured cast iron that was passed on to me as well, and I was fortunate when in the division of assets in my first marriage, that I received the cast iron and he the personalized “LSU FAN” license tag.

My sturdy and dependable pieces came on my journey to Seaside, Florida, and along the way I have continued to collect more. It seems each time I look; Lodge creates a new item; always versatile, moderately priced, and known for great performance.

Lodge Cast Iron is made in America, and is the only American manufacturer to make cast iron.  They monitor every pour, and if the chemistry isn’t right, they change it.  Throughout the whole process, if something is wrong with a piece, it’s taken out and remelted.

Lodge Cast Iron Cookbook

Lodge Cast Iron has a commitment to quality and innovation that makes them the soul of American Cooking.

I can remember my grandmother cooking fried chicken at a hot stove using her heavy black skillet. Although a wonderful memory, Mark Kelly, PR and Advertising Manager of Lodge Manufacturing “says, the goal of Lodge for the past 10 years has been to make cast iron cookware ‘hot’ again!  The best way to do that is to show the versatility of Lodge and cast iron cooking.  That was the goal of the book.”

Fresh Corn

Virtual Potluck was recently asked to review the Lodge Cast Iron Cookbook, and I for one was thrilled! Ten bloggers from our group will be participating, each sharing a different recipe, and each giving away this timeless cookbook.

The Lodge Cast Iron Cookbook (Oxmoor House $24.95) not only features 200 recipes and photographs from cookbook authors and chefs, but it is also a treasure trove of food memories. Alongside most recipes is a small piece written about the dish, who inspired it, and when.

Black Iron Skillet

Chapters in this book include, how to care for cast iron, renew, maintain, and cook from it. Also, Breakfast, Cooking Outdoors, Soup, Stews, Gumbo & Chili, an entire chapter on Cornbread, Desserts, Breads, and more.

I dove right into the book and Julia’s Succotash spoke to me. Though a summer dish, I went for it, as I was still growing tomatoes in pots on Christmas Day, and produce is already in abundance at The Seaside Farmers Market.

Grilling for the Girls

My Mother and Dad came over from Sandestin for the day, with my sister visiting from out of town. Dad grilled his “girls” their favorite burgers, while I made the delicious succotash as a side.

It was a special day that we all enjoyed, and I will definitely be making the succotash again.

The Lodge Cast Iron Cookbook contains soulful recipes, just like the cast iron they are cooked in, just like the people doing the cooking.

Julia’s Succotash

 Julia’s Succotash:

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 6 slices of bacon (preferably Bentons’s)
  • 1 medium yellow onion minced (preferably Vidalia)
  • 1 jalapeno chili seeded and minced
  • 3 cups sliced okra
  • 4 ripe tomatoes, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 6 ears fresh corn, husks removed
  • Dash of cayenne pepper, optional
  • 8 fresh basil leaves torn into pieces
Preparation:
  • Cook the bacon in a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove the bacon to paper towels to drain, reserving the drippings in the pan.
  • Add the onion and jalapeno to the drippings in the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, over low to medium-low heat until the vegetables begin to soften, 4-5 minutes. Increase the heat to medium, add the okra, and cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Add the tomatoes, garlic, salt, black pepper and thyme. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for another 3-4 minutes. Cut the kernels off the cobs. Discard cobs. Add the corn and simmer, partially covered, until it’s tender, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Check and adjust the seasonings and add a dash of cayenne. If desired, add the basil. Crumble the reserve bacon, sprinkle on top and serve.

Note:

Author and Garden & Gun contributing editor Julia Reed suggests that peeled fresh Gulf shrimp may be added to this recipe to create a main course, which I think sounds like a delicious option. If you add shrimp, a bit of liquid such as shrimp stock or chicken stock might also be needed.

Now For the Giveaway!

If you would like to enter the Lodge Cast Iron Cookbook Giveaway, leave a comment below sharing a dish that you love to make in your cast-iron, or one you can’t wait to try! If you do not own cast iron, that is just fine! It is affordable, and often available at flea markets and thrift stores, so pick yourself up a piece if you can.

This contest will run from April 4, 2012 to April 8, 2012 and is upen to those with a USA addresses. Winner will be chosen by random.org.

For more entries:

  1. Like Lodge Cast Iron on Facebook
  2. Like 30A EATS on Facebook
  3. Like Lodge on Twitter
  4. Like 30A EATS on twitter

Vist the Virtual Potluck bloggers participating in the Lodge Cast Iron Cookbook Review, for Ten more recipes,and

Ten more chances to win!

Miss In The Kitchen ~ Barbeque Shrimp With Rice

Barbeque Shrimp with Rice

Groovy Foodie ~ Blueberry Peach Skillet Pie (Sorry, This Blogger will be live a little later…4/4/2012)

Blueberry-Peach Skillet Pie

Diabetic Foodie ~ Hannah’s Apple Pancake

Hannah’s Apple Pancake

Cookistry ~ Ableskiver

Aebleskiver

Thyme In Our Kitchen~ Shepherd’s Pie

Shepherd’s Pie

Bite and Booze ~ Cornmeal Fried Catfish Over Black-Eyed Pea Salad With Pickled Jalapeno Relish

Cornmeal Fried Catfish over Black-Eyed Pea Salad

Rachel Cooks ~ This Ain’t No Yankee Cornbread

This Ain’t No Yankee Cornbread

FarmGirl Gourmet ~Thai Style, Shrimp with Fresh Basil

Thai Style, Shrimp with Fresh Basil

Food Hunters Guide ~ Chicken and Rice with Articokes

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