1½ cups dried black-eyed peas
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
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1 medium onion, diced
1 medium green bell pepper, diced
3 medium celery ribs, sliced
2 medium carrots, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
6 cups water
1 bay leaf
½ teaspoon liquid smoke
2 cups sliced fresh or frozen okra
1 cup uncooked long-grain brown rice
Soak the black-eyed peas overnight in enough cold water to cover them. Drain the peas and set aside.
Heat the olive oil in a large heavy pot. Add the onion, bell pepper, celery, carrots, garlic, cayenne and thyme and saute for 5 minutes.
Add the drained peas, broth, 3 cups water, bay leaf and liquid smoke to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour.
About 30 minutes into the cooking time, prepare the rice. If using a rice cooker, put the remaining 3 cups water and the rice into the cooker and prepare according to the manufacturer's instructions. If cooking on the stovetop, bring 3 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the rice and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook, covered, until all the liquid is absorbed, 45-50 minutes.
After the peas and vegetables have cooked for 1 hour, add the okra to the mixture and cook another 15 minutes. Remove the bay leaf. Serve immediately over the hot rice.
Cook's note: Substitute cooked barley, wheat berries, or quinoa for the brown rice for an interesting flavor variation.
Nutrition values per serving (about 1½ cups): 314 calories, 4 g fat, 58 g carbohydrate, 9 g fiber, 14 g protein, 59 mg sodium.
"The Plant-Powered Diet" by Sharon Palmer (2012)