Sunday, March 28, 2010

Edamame with Red Wine Reduction and Garlic

I have been thinking about edamame a lot lately: they are great steamed and salted like you find them in  Japanese restaurants. They don't seem to show up much elsewhere, which is too bad because they are delicious and versatile.  I have had edamame dishes at a couple different restaurants that inspired me to experiment with some different seasonings.

 When most people think of soy they tend to think of tofu, soymilk, and a whole range of processed soy products. Nothing is wrong with those, but I'd choose unprocessed soy beans over the more popular soy products any day.  If you haven't seen edamame in your grocery store, have a hunt through the frozen foods section, or go to an Asian specialty market. I usually buy a big bag of frozen edamame in their shells and another bag of frozen shelled edamame beans. The pre-shelled beans get boiled until bright green, about a minute, and thrown into pasta, soup, salad— everything. The beans in their pods have been getting every seasoning I can think of, and I will post some of the others soon. This red wine glazed recipe may very well be the best so far. The big slices of garlic get stained really deep purpley-red.

 Red wine edamame is an awesome appetizer at a casual party, served with baguette for soaking up juices, bowls for the empty pods and preferably with finger bowls or hot towels for the sticky fingers afterwards. It can also be served as a vegetarian main or side. Often when I am just cooking for two, this is all we eat. 

Red Wine Reduction and Garlic Edamame: 

  • 1 tbs butter
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 5 cloves garlic, sliced thinly, like in the photo above
  • about 1 cup cheap red table wine
  • 1 bag edamame in their shells, fresh or frozen
  • salt and coarsely ground black pepper

Melt butter and oil together in a frying pan. Add garlic and fry until soft and just starting to brown. Add red wine and edamame and cook over medium high heat until wine is reduced to a thick glaze. If the glaze gets too dry and thick add a tiny splash of water or wine and scrape the pan down. Season with salt and lots of black pepper. Serve with crusty bread to sop up the glaze. 

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