I was making a vegetarian soup this weekend and the recipe called to thicken
the broth with butter beans. Anyone know what these are or where I might
get them? I live in Ontario, Canada? I used white kidney beans instead and
they worked great but I would like to try it with butter beans.
IIRC, they look like small, pale yellowish lima beans, and tend to be
a bit softer than lima beans; taste is similar (but a bit milder, or
the other way round ;-). Lima beans would probably make a decent
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They come in a can. They look like large lima beans, except they're yellow
(I think). I haven't gotten them in a long time, but I usually buy in bulk,
and I don't remember seeing them there, so try the canned section. IIRC,
they're pretty flavorful.
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> I was making a vegetarian soup this weekend and the recipe called to thicken
> the broth with butter beans. Anyone know what these are or where I might
> get them? I live in Ontario, Canada? I used white kidney beans instead and
> they worked great but I would like to try it with butter beans.
Butter beans is another name for lima beans. I think they're called butter
beans in the UK and lima beans in North America.
On 2000-01-17 houg...@mcmail.cis.mcmaster.ca said:
>I was making a vegetarian soup this weekend and the recipe called
>to thicken the broth with butter beans. Anyone know what these are
Having grown up in the South, I always thought that lima beans were what
butter beans became if they were allowed to grow too large and were dried.
Or perhaps, butter beans are small, undried
limas? We always grew them in our
garden, and I still love them, even though I hated to shell them when I was
growing up. Now, I buy them frozen, so perhaps you could buy them that way,
too. There are also butter peas, these are even smaller and fatter than
butter beans, and taste similar.
>white kidney beans instead and they worked great but I would like
>to try it with butter beans.
When I eat kidney beans, I think they taste similar; I would use them, too,
if I didn't have butter beans.
I've seen canned lima beans right next to canned butter beans -- they do
look (and taste) similar. The canned butter beans are larger than the
canned lima beans. But...that's just how DelMonte defines them in my
part of the US. Is it sort of like the distinction between Hominy and
Posole? (more of a how-its-going-to-be-used and geographical distinction
than any difference in the actual product)
FWIW, the best way I ever had butter beans was grilled. They were
placed in a pocket of aluminum foil with some olive oil, then put on the
grill to cook through. Wonderful!
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Before you buy.
Er, I'm unsure what lima beans are, but iirc, they're liek enlarged
harricot beans. So butter beans are large, round and flat in comparison.
> Interestingly different responses to the butter bean request. Are they
> smaller or larger than lima beans? Are they just the same thing? Are
> they lima beans in a different state?
i grew up in the US mid-west (indiana). my father is from the US south
(mississippi) and my mother is from northern indiana.
so, no matter what branch of the family i was visiting, the following held
lima beans--small, green or white, flat beans.
butter beans--large, whitish yellow lima beans.
the dictionary says that the butter bean is a variety of lima bean.
i've seen cookbooks that find these huge white beans with purple streaks and
call them butter beans. it seems to be largely a regional colloquialism.
i have to agree with the other southerner. i've always thought and been told
that butter beans and lima beans were the same..
> The canned butter beans are larger than the canned lima beans.
And the dried butter beans I buy are also larger than the canned lima
beans I buy.
Rose Elliot's The Bean Book has pictures of both--showing the butter
beans at least twice the size of the lima beans. In the description, she
says that lima beans "are rather like butter beans in appearance and are
indeed referred to as butter beans in the southern USA." For butter
beans: "They need careful cooking so that they are tender but not
mushy." (And I've found this out myself.) So it looks like the recipe
that Lori Houghton mentioned is using this as a "feature".
> FWIW, the best way I ever had butter beans was grilled. They were placed
> in a pocket of aluminum foil with some olive oil, then put on the grill to
> cook through.
Ooooooo.... That sounds yummy. I'm looking for things to cook on a
Louise Bremner (log at gol dot com), from (^_^) Tokyo
Lori Houghton wrote...