Posts Tagged 'black eyed peas'

Black Eyed Pea Masala

They’re coming to an end and it HURTS! Those blissful days when I can stay at work until 5, then go for a run, cook dinner, and still take a picture of it in natural light. I can’t stand the thought of trying to make artificially lit photos work (because they just never do), but with work and running slightly (but only slightly) more important to my sanity than my blog, I guess I’ll just have to figure something out. I’ve survived 2 winters of blogging, but I was either in Thailand or not working a real adult job, so this will be a challenge.

On a pretty much completely unrelated note, I somehow ALWAYS have cupboards overflowing with random beans and grains, and I could swear the black eyed peas have been multiplying, because I feel like I’m constantly cooking with them but I keep finding more. Because I’m not that familiar with them, I turned to the queen of dried legumes (I hope she doesn’t mind that title), Branny, who inspired me to cook my own dried beans and stop buying canned. Tack “masala” onto just about anything and it’s a pretty sure bet Mike and I will like it, so I figured this would be good, and it was! I kind of veered off in my own direction when it came to vegetables and spices, but I have Branny to thank for the inspiration.

This is a very quick dinner if your beans are already cooked. I just threw mine in the slow cooker with plenty of water on low in the morning and they were perfect by the time I was ready to cook. It’s vegan if you use vegetable oil, but if you have ghee it would be perfect here.

Recipe:
(inspired by Branny Boils Over)

2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 thinly sliced serrano chiles (optional)
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
3 cups cooked black eyed peas, rinsed and drained
1 tsp salt
2 cups roughly chopped fresh spinach
2 tbsp ghee or vegetable oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground coriander
fresh cilantry, for garnish

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic, cook for about a minute, then stir in the tomatoes. Stir well, lower heat to medium, and add the black eyed peas, spinach, and salt. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until the spinach wilts slightly.

To finish, heat the ghee or vegetable oil in a small frying pan. When it’s hot, add the cumin seeds, turmeric, and coriander and let the spices fry for about 30 seconds. Immediately stir them into the black eyed peas and mix well. Serve over rice, garnished with fresh cilantro.

Black Eyed Pea Salad

Not being from the South, I don’t think I ate a single black eyed pea until a few months ago. I’m not jumping-up-and-down excited about them, but they’re not bad, and since we have a couple bags of them to use up, I’ve been trying to figure out what I can do with them. My search for recipes let me to Texas caviar, which appears to be just black eyed peas and diced vegetables in a vinegar dressing, served with tortilla chips.

I wanted to make a meal rather than an appetizer, so this is what I came up with. Meat-eaters would probably consider this a side, but I think it can hold its own as the main course of a light summer supper. The flavor improved a lot after a few hours in the fridge, so plan ahead. I’m sure frozen corn would work in a pinch, but now that we’re getting into peak corn season, it just makes sense to use it!

Recipe:
1 tbsp olive oil
2 ears of corn
3 cups cooked (or canned) black eyed peas
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
4 green onions, white and light green parts only, chopped
4 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp sugar
pinch or two cayenne pepper
salt
pepper

Slice the kernels of corn off the ears. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a wide skillet, then add the corn and saute over medium-high until it’s tender. Transfer to a bowl and let cool.

Stir in the black eyed peas, red and green bell pepper, and green onion, and toss well.

To make the dressing, whisk together the 2 tbsp olive oil, red wine vinegar, sugar, cayenne, and salt and pepper to taste (a pinch or two of each). Pour over the salad, toss well, then let sit in the fridge for a few hours before serving. It’s even better the next day.

Spicy Black Eyed Peas with Collard Greens

I’ve always been a little envious of people from the South because they have such strong traditions in food and football (among other things, obviously, but those stand out). It’s not that I don’t love the way I grew up eating in the Pacific Northwest, it just seems less endearing to talk about Dungeness crab than Grandma’s famous fried chicken.

My mom had a Southern cookbook on the shelf in our kitchen for awhile but she never cooked from it (some excuse about not wanting clogged arteries). So because Southern cooking is something I know far too little about, this recipe for collard greens and black eyed peas was an exciting find. As an added bonus, it’s really healthy.

Although I may never live in the South — I had more than enough hot, humid weather during our stint in Southeast Asia — maybe some day my kids will reminisce about my awesome spicy black eyed peas.

This actually may not be as Southern as I’d like to think because chipotles play a key role in the flavor, but they definitely make the dish great. Plus I think the holy trinity of onions, green bell pepper, and celery make up any points I lost with the chiles. It’s great as a soup or served with a slotted spoon over some steamed brown rice.

Recipe:
(adapted from Fat Free Vegan)

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups dried black-eyed peas, picked over and rinsed
6 cups water
1 pound collard greens, tough stems removed and greens chopped
1 teaspoons fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes
2 cups water
1 tablespoon hot sauce (such as Tapatio)
2 tbsp chopped canned chipotle chiles en adobo
1/2 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
1 -2 teaspoons salt (to taste)
2 tbsp tomato paste
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Heat a ductch oven over medium high and add the olive oil. Add the onions. Sauté for about 5 minutes, until they begin to brown. Add the celery, green pepper, and garlic, and cook, stirring, for 3 more minutes or until all the vegetables are soft.

Add the black-eyed peas, 6 cups of water, thyme, and oregano.

Simmer until the black eyed peas are tender, about 45 minutes.

Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for about 20 minutes. Adjust salt and spices to taste. Serve with a slotted spoon over brown rice.



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