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Black-Eyed Pea and Tomato Stew

Serves: Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup refined coconut oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, quartered lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 2 jalapeño chilies, stemmed, halved, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 3-ounce piece fresh ginger, cut into 4 to 6 chunks
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
  • 4 (14½-ounce) cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • Lime wedges, to serve
  • Plantain chips, to serve


Procedures:

This Ghanaian dish is traditionally made with red palm oil, but we liked more widely available coconut oil instead. We preferred Whole Foods’ 365 Everyday Value canned black-eyed peas for their soft, creamy texture. Goya brand, sold in slightly larger cans, also yielded good results, but the texture was a bit firmer. Fried plantains are the typical accompaniment to red-red. We liked the simplicity and crunch of store-bought plantain chips. If you like, garnish the stew with cilantro leaves and, for added spice, offer hot sauce at the table.

Don’t use unrefined coconut oil, which will give the dish a distinct coconut flavor.


In a Durotherm over medium-high (if using gas, don’t let the flames reach the sides of the pot), heat the coconut oil until shimmering. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, about 4 minutes. Stir in the jalapeños, ginger, tomato paste, curry powder and chipotle powder. Cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add the black-eyed peas and stir well. Stir in the water and soy sauce and bring to a simmer, scraping any browned bits from the bottom. Cover and bring to a simmer over medium, then cook, covered, for 20 minutes, adjusting heat to ensure a gentle simmer. Uncover and stir in the tomatoes. Cover and return to a simmer on low.

Immediately transfer the pot to its heat-retaining base for 20 minutes. The stew will stay hot for up to 2 hours. When ready to serve, uncover, remove and discard the ginger chunks, then taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve with lime wedges and plantain chips.

by Christopher Kimball

 
 
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