A Vegetarian Casserole Recipe With A Deliciously Intense Jamaican Sauce


This dish is essentially a bean stew with tomatoes, chili and coconut - a simple, very delicious recipe that combines black-eyed peas and vegetables in a delectable Caribbean sauce of tomatoes, coconut and thyme with just a hint of chili.

You can vary the vegetables and use whatever is in season for this vegetarian casserole recipe but I would keep the red pepper if possible. It gives the sauce a really vibrant colour.

Ingredients:

150g/5oz/¾ cup dried black-eyed beans (black-eyed peas)
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 red pepper, cut into strips
1/2 green pepper, cut into strips
Large handful of mange tout or green beans (about 75g or 3oz) halved
100g/4oz creamed coconut (half of an average sized block)
1 teaspoon of dried thyme
1 400g/14oz can of tomatoes
½ teaspoon chilli powder
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons lemon juice (about half a lemon)
Salt and pepper

Method:

1. Soak the beans, overnight if possible, rinse and boil until soft, about 30-40 minutes. Drain and set aside.

2. Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/Gas Mark 2

3. Heat a little olive oil in a saucepan and fry the onion gently until golden then add the garlic, chilli and thyme and stir for 1 minute.

4. Add the red pepper and cook for a few minutes, then add the tomatos and soy sauce. At this point, I like to puree the sauce with a blender. This will create a wonderfully thick scarlet sauce base but you don't have to do this if you don't want to.

5. Bring to the boil and add the creamed coconut. Now turn the heat down to a simmer and stir regularly to dissolve the coconut.

6. When the coconut has melted into the sauce, add the black-eyed beans and also the green beans. Transfer to the oven and cook for about 30 minutes.  You can skip the oven stage if you like and just simmer for 15 minutes. It will still taste delicious.

7. Just before serving, add the lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Serve with rice.



> > Bean Stew

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