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Restless by nature, on a whim I blew off city living and my career, to try my hand at a simpler-slower life in rural Tasmania. It's going to be one heck of a learning curve..join me as I find my feet, fingers crossed!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

My Blackeyed Peas!! (BEP's)







Step 1: Make a vegie stock..





= vegie stock..








Step 2: Assemble prep.







Step 3: Saute ingredients.







= Blackeyed peas.






We're heading out for lunch & I want to take something really delicious.
I have a passion for one pot meals. Aside from the convenience, it gives the ingredients
a chance to work out their individual energetics in the pot, rather than in your tummy!
Braised BEP's are easy to digest, warming & usually calming. Perfect for Winter!


A few tips........
If your new to making vegie stocks, don't be tempted to add just any veg. Stick to the basic,
neutral veg I have specified. Any deviations will vastly affect the flavour, colour, clarity & 
aroma in possibly, an unpleasant way. 
Keep your veg pieces large where possible & remember it's a quick cooking method. 
This basic recipe makes a golden orange coloured stock, for a lighter yellow stock reduce the tomato & pumpkin component & increase the other veg. Once your up & running with making your veg stock, you won't need a recipe....it's pretty easy stuff!

Worried about gas with your pulses, simple, change the water a few times while they're soaking in the fridge. Pulses can soak for days, providing the water is changed daily. I find it handy to have a variety soaking in the fridge at any one time. They can be drained & frozen in their uncooked state, giving you multiple menu options without planning ahead. Just proceed as normal using your thawed pre soaked pulse.
A pinch of asafoetida can be added for extra gas reducing properties. It's available at Indian- Asian grocers plus some IGA's. However the golden rule of cooking pulses is.......
NEVER ADD SALT until the pulses are tender & the dish is finished. 
Otherwise, it will toughen & extend their cooking time.

Try serving the BEP's with Red (japonica) rice, it's a good alternative to brown or white rice. Red rice has partial bran intact, a lovely nutty flavour & can be easier to digest than brown rice. Look for it at your local Indian/Asian grocer. Using button mushrooms will lighten the colour & flavour of the BEP's, for a stronger flavour & deeper colour try swiss browns or similar.

Originally I created this dish for WOMAD. I needed an unusual pulse dish to add to my foodstall menu. The public loved it, I sold in excess of 200 litres. And because I hate to see anyone go hungry, I donated the excess to local charities/shelters within the CBD. There's really no excuse for food wastage these days.
So enjoy the recipe, they're really really YUMMI!!!!!!!!

About asafoetida: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asafoetida
     About red rice: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_rice 

Note: In the vegie stock photo Step 1, I would not generally use the pumpkin flesh. But I had a home grown pumpkin which wasn't quite right. It was either this or the worm farm.......

VEGIE STOCK              
700g vegie offcuts, of the following: 
50g whole tomato-uncut
60g pumpkin skin &/or seeds
120g carrot pieces or peel
70g brown onion halves (skin on)
200g celery tops and/or base pieces
100g fennel bulb tops
100g leek tops (wash the leek to remove grit)
*Any of these vegies are interchangeable for quantities
         or use what's in season.
Place into a medium saucepan, fill with 3 litres of COLD water. Bring to a boil. 
Reduce to a simmer (medium heat) and cook for 40 minutes. 
Strain, reserving the liquid and discard the vegetables into your compost.
Place in fridge or can be frozen..........Makes approx 2 Litres.

BRAISED BEP'S WITH MUSHROOMS & SMOKED PAPRIKA
Makes- 1 Litre....Cooking time-1 hour
25 ml rice bran oil                               
1 large garlic clove                                
1 small onion, thinly sliced
¼ teaspoon tumeric
¾ teaspoon smoked paprika                
1 bayleaf      
***********************
                           150g grated pumpkin                                   
100g carrots, small dice    
100g celery, small dice                              
¾ cup blackeyed peas           
800ml vege stock
220g button mushrooms, sliced            
1/2 a juiced lemon                                                         
½ teaspoon of chopped thyme/rosemary
1 teaspoon salt & a pinch of white pepper           
   
Soak the blackeyed peas in water to cover.
Place in the fridge overnight. Next day drain & rinse well.
1. Sweat the first 6 ingredients for 5 minutes.
2. Add the pumpkin, carrot & celery & sweat for 5 mins.
3. Add the b’peas, vege stock & cover (lid), cook on low for 1 hour.
4. Add the mushrooms, replace the lid cook for 6 mins, turn off.
5. To finish add the salt, pepper, lemon juice & finely chopped herbs.
Great with: steamed red, brown or basmati rice.
Note: Dice the carrot & celery no larger than the BEP's...

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