Monday, July 3, 2006

Edamame Vegetable Sauté: Whose Recipe is This Anyway?

Here's a food blogging dilemma I recently experienced. Two weeks ago I decided I wanted to cook up a dish using edamame. I'd even thought up the main ingredients I would use. Besides edamame, I would add grilled corn, red bell peppers and sweet onion, for starters, plus something warm to give it some zing.

One week ago while shopping, I spied a bag of frozen, organic shelled edamame. Ah ha! said I and tossed it into my cart. Knowing I was going to make this for a block party we hosted last night, I noodled on the recipe and ingredients as the days passed. I even told Clay about it.

Three days ago, I was straightening up the kitchen table (where the new arrivals of my cooking mag subscriptions sit until I read them) and saw that I hadn't read the July issue of Fine Cooking yet. Eschewing tidying up for a (long) moment, I promptly made a cup of coffee, sat down and thumbed through it. Imagine my surprise when, on page 72, I spied MY recipe for an edamame saute.

Now, I say this is a dilemma because I'd planned to post this as my very own, original recipe. I thought it up, right? But now that I know it's not only not original, it's in Fine Cooking, how can I claim it to be mine? Evidently I can't. Not exclusively anyway. You're just going to have to believe that I came up with it on a separate but parallel wave-length - which I firmly believe happens to cooks, chefs, food bloggers, etc., more often than you might guess.

This is a low fat, heart-healthy combination of fresh veggies and comes to you from the collective conciousness of me, Fine Cooking and fine cooks everywhere who've had similar experiences. Add a piece of lightly marinated, grilled salmon and you'll have a well rounded, delicious dinner.

The use of fresh oregano in this dish begs for it to be a candidate for the upcoming Weekend Herb Blogging event, home based at Kalyn's Kitchen, and being hosted this week by Gabriella at My Life as a Reluctant Housewife. Gabriella will be doing the round-up next Monday.

Edamame Vegetable Sauté
1 tablespoon good olive oil
1 teaspoon butter
1 10-ounce bag frozen, shelled edamame (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/3 cup sweet onion, diced small
1 red bell pepper, diced small
1 ear fresh white corn, kernels cut from ear
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped fine
1/8 teaspoon (more or less, depending on your tolerance) cayenne
1 small fresh tomato, cut into medium dice
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
White wine vinegar (optional)

Place olive oil and butter in a pan over medium high heat. When butter has melted, add the edamame and stir to coat. Add the onion, stir and saute about 5 minutes. Lower the heat if the veggies start to brown. When the edamame are tender-crisp, add the bell pepper and corn and saute another 4 minutes or until the vegetables are tender but not mushy. The edamame will stay somewhat firm to the bite. Stir in the oregano and cayenne and season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove from heat.
I stirred in about a teaspoon of champagne vinegar to give the flavors a boost. I think you could do the same with lemon juice, but start out with very small amounts and adjust to taste.
Gently fold in the diced tomatoes just before serving. They will have a fresh cooling effect on the cayenne.

Oh, and next time I'll take a well-deserved tip from Fine Cooking and use fresh jalapeno pepper instead of cayenne.  Finely diced.


  1. It so obvious what happened! They stole it from you. Sigh. I love the frozen shelled edamame and YOUR recipe looks great.

  2. Oh that happens all the time! I can't remember the term for this but basically the world is a small place and there is a general collective of thought that runs through like circles of the world. It is like making a roast chicken with sage and thyme and not using a recipe in front of you so did you write that recipe or did 300 people besides you write it?

    Well your recipe looks delicious. And "Great Minds Think Alike!"

    Thanks so much for joining us this week!

  3. Thanks Sher. I liked my recipe also.

    You said it much better than I. Thanks.

    Happy 4th of July!

  4. Hey, Look at this article. It is right on topic.

  5. Thanks Gabriella. I read it last night and it really points out how gray is the world of recipes and copyright law.

  6. I've been wondering what to do with my frozen edamame. Thanks for the idea :)

    And don't worry about the parallel recipe plan. This has happened in MANY fields of thought throughout history. Even the theory of evolution was thought up simultaneously by more than one 19th century man so why not a recipe, eh? Sucks though when you thought it original. That I understand

  7. How bizzare! Did every single ingredient been counted for?

    This happened to my Fiance who doesn't read foodblogs, have known to read a cookbook for less than 5 minutes once, decided to cook me something special for valentines day. He even took the day off the poor bloke. Anyway, he made me this delicious marinated tiger prawns for starter [ingredients just thrown together] and turned out a now favourite of ours. One year later, while watching tv, suddenly came accross the recipe being recited and cooked on tv! He was gobsmacked - so was i. He thought it was 'HIS' original recipe...

    Like Gabriella said, 'Great Minds...'

  8. Gabriella is right, many people think of the same things at once. It sounds wonderful. I buy the big bags of frozen edamame at Costco, so I'm always looking for ways to use them.

  9. Yes, Mae, Gourmet pretty much listed each ingredient I used with the exception of the jalapeno pepper. Thanks for checking in.

    Hi Kalyn, good to have you back!

  10. that's looks great! I should have bought those fresh edamame I saw at the farmers market.


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