I don't know about you, but at my house it always seems that Christmas falls on the woman in the family. Perhaps I'm wrong. But around here it was me who made the cookies and cakes, shopped for all the gifts, wrapped every package, planned Christmas dinner, shopped for all the food, then cooked all the food, decorated the tree (all but the lights, hubby put those on) and then got out a step stool to get all the good dishes down from the top cupboard where they resided most of the year.
CARIBBEAN PEAS AND RICE
2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1 bunch green onions
2 celery stalks, minced
1 Tbs. minced fresh ginger
4 fresh thyme twigs (1/4 tsp. dried)
1 1/2 tsp. green Tabasco sauce
2 tsp. jerk seasoning
1 cup brown rice (I used white rice as it's faster cooking.)
2 Tbs. ketchup
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 bunch kale, chopped small
1 15 oz. can black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
In a large saucepan, pour a layer of vegetable broth and saute the onions, celery, garlic, ginger, thyme, hot sauce, and 1 tsp. of the jerk seasoning. Cook over high heat until the celery is soft. About 3 minutes.
Add the remaining jerk seasoning and stir to coat. Stir in the black-eyed peas. Cover and move the pot to a back burner to simmer and let the spices meld. Do not let the pan go dry. Add more broth or water as needed to retain moisture but not to drown. In all, you'll likely use about 1/2 cup of the broth.
In a small saucepan put:
2 cups of vegetable broth, the ketchup, and turmeric. Stir to combine.
Add the rice. Bring to a boil and cover. Turn heat down to very low and ignore it for 20 minutes. (If you use brown rice, cook for 45 min.)
About 10 minutes before serving, add the kale to the black-eyed pea mixture. Cover and cook till the kale is wilted.
To serve, place big serving of rice on a plate and top with the black-eyed pea/kale mixture. Sprinkle with some green onion tops if desired.
I used Swiss chard instead of kale because the chard looked fresher. Any green would work. Your preference.
The fresh ginger was too strong for my palette. Next time I'll cut it by half.
Jerk seasoning is available in the grocery store's spice aisle. Buy it and make your life easy. Otherwise you'll be mixing this and that and twelve other spices together to get what someone has already bottled up.
Dinner was on the table in about 30 minutes. Can't beat that for a busy day.
This Christmas season, share your table with someone less fortunate than you. I don't remember a holiday as a child growing up when there were not strangers at our table. Sometimes it was a teacher who was alone or a couple from our church who had no one and once we moved to CA, there were always two or three marines who were far from home who ate with us and thanked my parents over and over for allowing them to be part of a family on Christmas Day.