Friday, August 30, 2013

Caribbean Peas and Rice...with Kale!

I love the combination of beans and rice and this recipe was a great opportunity to make a new dish using those healthy ingredients. This one is reminiscent of past travels in the Caribbean and dining on local cuisine. Peas and rice are a staple there, and it just happens to also be vegan! This recipe is from Happy Herbivore and also uses an ingredient that's a fan-favorite...kale!

The recipe calls for jerk seasoning, which I did not have on hand. However, I had all of the spices required in order to make a jerk spice blend, so I was able to make it from scratch! I used this one from Allrecipes, minus the oil:

2 tbsp dried minced onion
2 1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp ground allspice
2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp salt

Combine all of those ingredients together. Any extra seasoning that you don't use could be stored in a small jar for next time!

Here's the recipe - this one makes enough to serve 4, or you can save it for lunch the next day like I am if you're dining solo!

1 bunch scallions, white parts sliced thin
2 whole celery stalks, minced
4 whole garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp fresh ginger root, minced
4 whole fresh thyme leaves
1½ tsp hot sauce
2 tbsp ketchup
¼ tsp turmeric
1 bunch kale, chopped into small pieces
15 ounces black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1 cup brown rice, uncooked
2½ cups vegetable broth
2 tsp Jamaican dried jerk seasoning (using recipe above)

Combine rice with 2 cups of vegetable broth in a large pot and set aside. Line a skillet with a thin layer of broth and add scallions, celery, garlic, ginger, thyme, hot sauce and 1 tsp jerk seasoning. Cook over high heat, adding additional broth as necessary, until the celery is soft, about 3 minutes. Add remaining jerk seasoning, stirring to coat. Transfer to rice, add 2 squirts of ketchup and turmeric, stirring to combine. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling reduce heat to low and simmer 40-50 minutes, until rice is cooked.  You might have to add more broth as the rice absorbs the liquid. Once rice is fully cooked, stir in black-eyed peas and greens. Let the greens wilt slightly. You can serve with hot sauce or add a little bit of salt, if needed.

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