Southern Distinction presents a new recipe every day from one of our sponsored restaurants of the week! This week we present Girasoles from Watkinsville, Ga. along with other sponsors including Striplings General Store, Chappelle Gallery, Hillside Orchards, Fire & Flavor, The Veggie Patch, and The Olive Basket.
Bacon and Creamed Lima Beans with Tarragon
By Girasoles & Chappelle Gallery
6-7 Strips of Thick Sliced Bacon, trimmed of most fat and diced (1 ½ cups)
(Striplings General Store)
1 ½ cups diced Sweet Vidalia onion
1 lb. frozen lima beans
1 cup chicken broth
2 Tbsp. fresh minced tarragon
(The Veggie Patch)
1 ½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. freshly grounded black pepper
⅛ tsp. crushed red pepper
1 ½ Tbsp. extra virgin butter olive oil
(The Olive Basket)
- Saute the bacon in a large, heavy saucepan over medium high heat for 5 to 8 minutes, until browned. Add the onion and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, until onion is translucent. Add the lima beans and cook for 4 to 5 minutes stirring often until lima beans are a light golden brown.
- Pour in the chicken broth and stir in the tarragon, salt, black pepper and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil, cover, and lower the heat, simmering for 10 minutes, or until the beans are tender.
- Uncover and return to medium heat, boiling for 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the cream and boil, uncovered for 2 minutes, or until the liquid is reduced by ⅓. Remove from the heat and stir in the extra virgin butter olive oil. Serve immediately. Top with fresh sliced tarragon.
Girasoles (pronounced here-ah-SO-lays), a small Mexican-Mediterranean fusion restaurant in Watkinsville, GA, about 10 miles outside of Athens, is serving up innovative meals with high-quality ingredients. Owner Chef Jose Zambrano finds ways to ingrain his restaurant firmly in this small community of 2,000 people, drawing in loyal customers with not only his delicious menu, but also an overwhelming sense of hospitality. Chef Zambrano’s education in food was entirely hands on, at the sides of some of the best chefs in California. Schooled primarily in the French tradition, Chef Zambrano’s talents led him to work for the Hilton Hotel chain, first in Newport Beach, and later in Beverly Hills. From there, he moved to Georgia to open his first restaurant. Chef Zambrano’s firm belief in using only the freshest possible ingredients also aligns his restaurant with a current trend toward using the best of what is local and in season. “Everything here is fresh. We don’t even have a microwave in this restaurant. We never use processed vegetables or ingredients.” For Chef Zambrano, extending so much hospitality to his guests is more than a business trend; it is a basic philosophy and a way of keeping his business footing in the community, even as the economy tightens belts for both the restaurateur and the consumer.