No two foods are more evocative of summer to me than garden-fresh tomatoes and sweet corn. Both fall into the category of “available all year round, but why bother?”. Tomatoes go from juicy, tangy, sweet, vibrant and pleasingly misshapen to pallid, mealy, flavorless, numbingly uniform globes. The sweet pop of kernels in freshly-picked corn becomes starchy mush in the off season. The out of season versions just don’t hold a candle to the real thing. Put them both together and it’s like summer in a bowl. The kind of fleeting pleasure to savor while it lasts and remember (or look forward to) fondly the other 10 months of the year.
Filed under: Salad, Side | Tags: basil, cabbage, lime, peanuts, purple beans, Thai
A week ago my dad gave me a bag of purple beans from his garden. My dad’s always grown purple beans, for as long as I can remember. It’s a bit out of character with the rest of his garden, really. Everything else he grows is very standard…beefsteak tomatoes, green bell peppers, eggplants, zucchini, spinach. But for whatever reason, he’s grown purple beans most years as far back as I can remember.
But purple beans have always been a disappointment to me. You see, they turn green when you cook them. Cooked, they’re pretty much indistinguishable from normal green beans. I can still remember the first time I saw my mom put a bowl of purple beans into the microwave and take out a bowl of green beans. I was pretty crushed. No exciting purple food for dinner…just the same old green beans. Once I got used to the idea, it was kinda fun to have color-change beans, but I never did entirely get over the disappointment of that first time.
This is one of those cases where the recipe didn’t go quite according to plan, but still turned out well despite that. When you’re starting out with ingredients like this, it’s no wonder the end result is good, no matter the roadblocks.