I've been making lots of one pot dishes recently such as Rhubarb and Lentil Curry; Moroccan Tajine; and Mushroom Strogonoff for when the rain came down.
This Aubergine, Black eyed peas, pepper and Coconut Pot came soon after. It's been either too hot or muggy to be slaving in the kitchen for long hours, so I have been opting for one pot summery dishes using seasonal ingredients where I can. I have to say my efforts have all been appreciated.
I would describe this Aubergine, Black eyed peas, pepper and Coconut Pot closer to a Sri Lankan style curry, one that is not too spicy. It really was mildly curried and sweet from the coconut. I loved the soft nutty flavour from the black eyed peas that melted in your mouth and the aubergines were cooked perfectly. Not hard at all, but not to soft either and the green peppers still had a little crunch.
I served it with plain white Basmati rice my favourite, but if you want to ring the changes couscous would also do or even good chunky bread.
Aubergine, Black-eyed peas, Pepper and Coconut Pot
Serves 4 - 6
200g dried black eyed peas, soaked in cold water overnight
4 tablespoons of vegetable oil
2 medium onions, finely sliced
2 - 3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon of red chilli flakes, or to taste
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon turmeric
Salt to taste
1 x 400g tinned tomatoes, roughly chopped including liquid
200ml vegetable stock
2 green peppers, sliced length ways
1 x 400ml tin of coconut milk (unsweetened)
Drain and rinse the black eyed peas, then put into a large pot and cover with water. Bring to the boil, then turn heat down and simmer for about an hour or until the peas are tender. Drain and set aside.
Preheat the oven to gas mark 6/200oc. Either slice or cube the aubergine into bite size pieces, then toss in 2 tablespoons oil and lay them in a single layer on a baking tray. Roast in the oven for 10 - 15 minutes, turning a couple of times, until they are soft to the touch and lightly charred. Set aside.
In a wide pan, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, add the onions and garlic and sauté until they are beginning to soften. Stir in the spices and salt to taste. Sauté for a few more minutes. Add the tinned tomatoes, vegetable stock and black eyed peas and bring to a boil, before turning down the heat and allowing it to simmer. As the liquid slightly begins to thicken, stir in the peppers and coconut milk. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes. In the last 5 minutes, stir in the aubergines. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary and serve immediately with an accompaniment. Adapted from Sri Lankan Cuisine and Denis Cotter For the Love of Food.