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I don’t see why green beans should get to have all the fun. Green beans are the most popular holiday bean, but I suspect that’s because we smother them in creamy soups and fried onions. I have eaten and enjoyed many a green bean casserole, but my favorite bean to have on the holiday table is the lima bean (also known as “the butter bean”). Lima beans are polarizing. My mother—who loves every other edible plant except celery—cannot stand them (because she is wrong), but she is the only anti-lima member of the immediate family. Everyone else is an enthusiastic supporter, because we have taste . When cooked correctly, they have a velvety, almost creamy texture and nutty, savory flavor. Undercooked lima beans, however, are terrible. They’re mealy, nearly chalky, and not at all fun to eat. Judging by what I have been served in many restaurants, I think that the vast majority of lima bean haters have never had fully cooked lima beans (except my mother—she really does hate them no matter how cooked they are). Lima beans aren’t flashy. They don’t need bells and whistles (or soup and onions). If simmered long enough, their pot liquor becomes thick and creamy, thanks to their high levels of starch. They’re warm, comforting, and extremely filling, which makes them a fantastic addition to the Thanksgiving table if there are vegetarians or vegans in attendance (or if you’re trying to consume less meat ). When to soak your lima beans Cooking […]