I can't remember exactly when I first had edamame, but it was surely well into my adult years. Frankly, even though I'm a huge fan of legumes, until then I thought soybeans were only meant for feeding livestock. That changed as soon as I popped the first edamame into my mouth. Now, it's one of my favorite foods. And why not? They're good for you, super fast to prepare, and delicious. I always keep several bags of frozen shelled edamame in my freezer, for snacking or meals. I've had different versions of this recipe, and it can be adapted to your personal taste. You can add more or less of the soy sauce, vinegar, and chili sauce, if you wish. Sometimes I add some chopped ginger root too. You can also replace the almonds with peanuts or cashews. I make this dish and stash it in the fridge, where it improves with age--if you can resist eating it all as soon as you make it.
I used mint in this version, but other times I've used cilantro. Either yields a marvelous quick salad.
Edamame With Mint, Almonds, And Scallions
(Adapted from Sunset Magazine)
I lb. shelled edamame, cooked about 3 minutes in boiling water, then drained and cooled
2 Tablespoons sesame seed oil
1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon chili sauce
1/4 cup sliced almonds (or chopped peanuts or cashews)
2 scallions sliced thin
1/4 cup chopped mint or cilantro
Combine sesame seed oil, soy sauce, chili sauce, and vinegar together. Taste to adjust seasonings, if you like. Toss the edamame and the dressing together in a large bowl, then add the mint, scallions, and almonds and toss again. Serve at room temperature.