Yesterday, I made my red beans and rice in preparation for Fat Tuesday. I was scheduled to have a choir rehearsal at my home and one of the members had suggested that we have a Mardi Gras celebration. Well, the snow has changed our plans, so I’ll be eating this and freezing the rest.
Author: Darrilyn Vassar-Jackson
Package of red beans, sorted through for stones
2 TBSP virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 large onion, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeds removed and minced
1 inch fresh ginger, peeled and smashed
1 medium red or orange bell pepper, chopped
2 celery stalks, diced
2 bay leaves
1 tsp dried thyme
¼ tsp cayenne
2 tsp Cajun seasoning
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 TBSP liquid smoke
1 tsp Himalayan pink salt or sea salt
4 cups of steamed Basmati rice (brown or white)
4 scallions, sliced for garnish
Place beans in a large bowl, cover with water and soak overnight.
Rinse and drain
Place a large heavy sauce pan (I use Le Creuset Dutch Oven) over medium heat.
Add oil, sauté garlic, onions, celery and bell peppers for a few minutes.
Add red beans, jalapeno pepper, ginger, thyme and smoked paprika.
Stir well, then add 7 cups of water and bay leaves.
Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium and cook for 1 ½ hours.
Stir periodically and add more water if needed.
Add the salt and liquid smoke when beans are tender.
When done, remove the bay leaves and ginger.
Remove a ladle full of beans from pot and mash with a fork.
Return mashed beans to pot and season to taste.
If you want more spice, add hot sauce.
Prepare Basmati rice (a variety of long grain rice that has medium glycemic index, making it more suitable for diabetics) according to instructions.
Serve the red beans on top of Basmati rice and garnish with the scallions.