Joni Woolf: New vegetable recipes for summertime dining

Published 10:56 am Saturday, June 15, 2019

Every time I visit my friend and former colleague Lynn Cass in her North Carolina home, I come away with a new recipe. Lynn is always looking for new ways to try old foods, and to encourage her husband, Mike, to eat vegetables (his favorite vegetable is Candy Corn).  So, it was no surprise when she presented a lovely vegetable dish to accompany baked chicken, rice, and a relish tray of assorted fresh, raw vegetables accompanied by French bread. The vegetable dish looked like succotash: one could see that it contained butterbeans, corn, and okra. But looks are often deceiving. It was a salad, served cold, and was so good that I asked for seconds. It will make a great take-along dish to summer picnics and dining out — or in.


Butter Bean, Corn, and Okra Salad

(Serves 6)


¼ cup red wine vinegar

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

1 teaspoon dry mustard

½ teaspoon sugar

Salt and pepper to taste


2 ½ cups cooked butterbeans

2 ½ cups fresh corn kernels

1 cup chopped sweet onion

1 cup pickled okra, sliced

For the dressing, combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and stir to blend.

For the salad, in a medium bowl combine the butterbeans, corn, onion, and okra. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and mix well. Adjust seasonings to taste. Chill several hours before serving


A second recipe she shared and encouraged me to try is for an edamame salad. It should be a hit with vegetarians, or any who don’t include meat in their diets. It is easy to prepare and pretty to behold. I will try it. I hope you will.


Edamame Multi-Bean Salad

1 15.5-oz. can garbanzo beans, rinsed well

1 15.5-oz. can kidney beans, rinsed well

1 15.5-oz. can black beans, rinsed well

1 16-oz. bag frozen sweet corn, cooked according to package directions

(or 5 or 6 ears fresh corn, cooked 5 minutes each in microwave, then cut from cob)

1 10-oz. bag frozen, shelled edamame, cooked according to directions

1 red bell pepper, cored, thinly sliced

1 small bunch scallions, thinly sliced

1 bunch cilantro, washed well, dried and thinly chopped (about 2 cups)

½ cup canola oil

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon lime juice

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

Mix beans, corn, edamame, bell pepper, scallions, and cilantro in large bowl. In medium bowl, combine oil, vinegar, lime juice, garlic, salt, and pepper. Mix dressing with salad right before serving.


Summertime is a great time for experimenting with a wide variety of dishes — especially those you can prepare at night and finish the next day. Saturday night I prepared the baked bean dish I wrote about last week, then baked it early Sunday morning to take to a church picnic. It must have been good — it was all eaten. I got a small serving and decided (for any who may have read the recipe and considered preparing it) that the apples did nothing for the recipe. They didn’t subtract from it, but I could not taste them, so I see no reason to add them — other than the fact that fruits are always good for you. Maybe that is reason enough. But the beans are just as good without the apples. Rather than laying the bacon in long strips across the beans, I used kitchen shears to cut bacon in one-inch pieces. That means everyone got a bite!



Joni Woolf, a writer and editor, now lives in Schley County, having moved from her home in Macon several years ago. Contact her at