This is something that we cooked for a quick dinner. Since we got a pressure cooker, we’ve started using much more dried pulses. It’s great not having to plan in advance, and just quickly cook up some beans when you feel like it. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, this isn’t as fast to make, unless you substitute canned black-eyed peas for the dried ones. If you’ve been thinking about buying a pressure cooker, we strongly recommend it. Not only does it free you from the tyranny of canned beans and make all kinds of cooking faster, but it also saves energy. Well, enough hype, on to the recipe.
This is what we used for the peas:
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 2 onions, chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 teaspoon vegetable stock powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons tomato purée
- 4 teaspoons chipotle paste (Santa Maria brand, 34% chipotle)
- 11 dl water
- 5 dl dried black-eyed peas
- ½ teaspoon barley starch mixed with ½ dl water
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 dl oat cream
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2-3 tablespoons chopped frozen cilantro (coriander leaves)
In the afternoon, Anni poured boiling water over the black-eyed peas, and let them soak for about 3 hours. If you’re not using a pressure cooker, just soak the peas overnight in cold water. Pre-soaking isn’t necessary when cooking with pressure, but it makes the pulses much easier to digest.
We started by chopping the bell pepper and onions, and crushed the garlic. We put the pressure cooker over medium high heat, and heated the olive oil in it. First, we added the onions and garlic, and fried them for a few minutes. Then we added the chopped bell pepper, and continued frying for a couple of minutes more. Now it was time to add the ground coriander, tomato purée and chipotle paste, and fry the mixture for two or three minutes, stirring all the time with a wooden spatula.
Next, we added the oregano, vegetable stock powder, and the water, which we had heated in the water cooker first. Now, we sealed the pressure cooker. We cooked the stew in low pressure for 11 minutes. (Our pressure cooker has only two pressure settings, high, and low – I don’t know if they are all like that.) Now, we lowered the pressure, opened the cooker, and added the salt, sugar, and oat cream, then closed the cooker, and brought the pressure up again, and cooked for 5 more minutes. Once more, it was time to lower the pressure, and open the cooker.
The last step was to thicken the stew by pouring in the barley starch mixed in water, stirring it in, and bringing the stew to boil for a few minutes. Before serving, Anni mixed in the frozen cilantro, and mashed a small portion of the peas with a fork. We ate the black-eyed pea stew with jasmine rice and a side of grated carrot, and squeezed some lime juice on top of the serving.
Since we’re slightly paranoid about not burning the food in the pressure cooker, we used plenty of water in the dish. To get a thicker consistency, one could use slightly less water, maybe 8-9 dl, but taste-wise the proportions were quite balanced: the delicate aroma of the peas was nicely contrasted by the earthy fieriness of the chipotle paste.