I'm attempting to get back into my old posting routine. Work has been Rough lately (with a capital R!) but I'm trying to work my way through this. At least I got a short holiday break when I was able to make a quick trip to Florida for the weekend.
Sunshine! Warmth! Beach! Pool time! It sort of reminded me that I've been sitting on this Bahamian recipe for a while. Oops. So here I am now, back in North Jersey. I'm working with temperatures that are fluctuating between 50 and 75 degrees. I'm desperately hoping that the temperatures stay in that range all winter long. A girl can dream, right?
To help me relive my days in the sun, I'm finally handing over this recipe for Bahamian peas and rice. It's a staple dish in the Bahamas, as no Sunday dinner or family gathering is complete without it. The list of ingredients may seem slightly daunting but trust me, this is a relatively easy to make. If you do try it out, please leave a comment and tell me how you liked it!
Bahamian Peas n' Rice
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 - 1 1/2 strips bacon, diced
- 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 1 tomato, diced
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1//4 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 3/4 cup canned pigeon peas (or other type of peas or beans) + 1/4 cup juices*
- 2 tablespoons ketchup or tomato paste
- 1/2 teaspoon browning, optional
- 2 1/3 cups long grain white rice
- butter, optional
1) Add the vegetable oil to a medium-sized pot which has been placed over medium heat.
2) Once the oil is heated, add the bacon and fry for 2 minutes, making sure it doesn't get too crispy.
3) Add the onion, tomato, and thyme. You can strip the leaves off the stems or you can toss in the springs and pull out the stems later. Sprinkle in the red peper flakes, black pepper, and salt. Stir everything together and allow the contents of the pot to simmer until the tomatoes and onions are softened.
4) Squirt in the ketchup or tomato paste. Add the browning, if using. Stir everything together until mixed well.
5) Pour in the pigeon peas and the juice.**
6) Pour in 2 1/2 cups water and stir. Taste the broth to see if the broth is seasoned enough. Make sure the broth is seasoned slightly more than desired.
7) Bring everything to a boil.
8) Stir in the rice and bring the contents to a boil once again for 3-5 minutes.
9) Stir once again. Allow the rice to boil until the water has evaporated so that when you stir again, you can see the rice easily.
10) Adjust the heat to "Low". Cover the pot and allow the rice to simmer for about 10 minutes.
11) Stir the rice and allow to cook for 30 minutes, or until done.
12) Serve immediately. Serve with a pat of butter on top, if desired.
* If you don't have canned pigeon peas, you can use dried peas that have been boiled. If you can't find or don't like pigeon peas, you can use any type of peas or beans that you like.
** If you don't have any juices from the peas or beans, you can substitute 1/4 cup water.