Saturday, 10 July 2010

Hodge Podge

I made this from a description - but such a lovingly detailed description that it might as well have been a recipe - in "Across the Table" by Cynthia Wine; one of the first books to take a comprehensive look at Canadian cuisine (and beautifully illustrated by Mary Pratt). This was described as a Nova Scotian dish designed to make the most of early summer garden produce. I can't say I had ever heard of it prior to reading about it in the book; my Nova Scotian grandma ran more to cake mix plus Jell-O when it came to collecting recipes, even though rumour has it she made the best fish cakes ever. Anyway, I guess I can make this here in Ontario too; my garden is definitely starting to produce more than peas. Hurray! Everything came out of the garden but the potatoes and carrots which came from a local veggie stand.

I admit I didn't make it quite as described. I just can't bring myself to commit that kind of pea-abuse. (They went into the boiling pot first, before the potatoes, even - is sacrilige!) Also, the original didn't call for a zucchini. But guess what; I had one, so in it went. After all, it's that kind of recipe and very good too. Yeah, awfully rich but I tell myself it's balanced out by all those veggies.

4 to 6 servings
20 minutes prep time

Hodge Podge
8 to 12 new potatoes
2 or 3 small young carrots
2 fresh onions, including their green tops
2 cups green beans
1 medium zucchini
2 cups freshly shelled green peas or snow peas or both
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
salt & pepper

Scrub the potatoes and cut them in half if they are not quite bite-sized. Put them in a biggish pot with water to generously cover them and bring them to a rolling boil. Scrub and chop the carrots and throw them in there too.

While the potatoes and carrots cook, start preparing and adding the remaining vegetables to the boiling pot, in the order given: peel and coarsely chop the onions and their greens, top and tail the beans and cut them in half, wash and chop the zucchini into bite-sized pieces and shell the peas or top and tail the snow peas.

When the potatoes are tender, drain the vegetables well and return them to the pot. Add the butter, and stir until melted. Add the cream and season with salt & pepper to taste.

Last year at this time I made Broccoli, Feta & Pasta Salad, and Chimichurri with garlic scapes.


Maryrose said...

I have a friend from New Brunswick who introduced me to Hodge podge. It wasn't until I saw the recipe in Simply in Season that I realized it was more than her families recipe. It is one delicious dish.

I hope to make it from my own garden for the first time this year.

I also wanted to let you know I have linked to your sight in my "Local Love" Section @

Ferdzy said...

Thanks, Maryrose! It's always fun to eat at other people's houses and say, "Oh! You make this too!" I think we often forget nowadays how many ways we are all linked by food.

Jennifer said...

Hodge Podge is hands down a classic in our Maritime home!!! Delicious! yours looks so good!

Joanne said...

I love how you have all of summer's best in there!