Tonight was another “Get It Ripe” night, and it actually surpassed the other recipes I’ve made from this cookbook. I swear, I do use other cookbooks, it is just that I tend to get into the habit of using one for a while, and then I eventually switch to another….last month it was “Eat, Drink and Be Vegan,” so there you go. VeganMoFo just happened to fall in my “Get It Ripe” month!
I actually picked out the recipe for “Southern Bowl: Chipotle black-eyed peas, mashed sweet potatoes, and collard greens” primarily because it incorporated greens into the recipe, and Jae herself had reminded me last week to make sure I eat greens with dinner.
Getting my greens is definitely a weakness of mine, and though I bought some greens (in addition to the collards for the southern bowl recipe), and had every intention of steaming some each night with dinner (and adding lemon juice and herbamare, as suggested by Stephanie, a great suggestion as it turned out!), I lasted just one night before forgetting again.
Best intentions and all that.
So the meal that incorporates the greens is definitely a safer bet for me! Plus it sounded delicious.
And it helpfully suggested making the molasses cornbread to go with it, and hey! I’d been looking for a recipe to use my carob molasses in, so it all came together.
I only wish I’d made this on the weekend, because it took me 90 minutes from start to finish, which is a big chunk of a weeknight evening. I am slow, so take that time with a grain of salt.
It was all quite easy, and the timing (started the beans, then did the cornbread, then did the mashed potatoes, and then the collards) worked out perfectly, so that everything was ready at the right time through no talent of my own.
And the taste? Fantastic. Each part of the southern bowl would taste well enough on its own, but the combination of all the flavors and textures practically made me swoon. Or would have if I was southern, rather than just living in the not-so-deep south!
The cornbread came out wonderfully as well – firm and moist, slightly sweet, and slightly different thanks to the molasses. I will make it someday with blackstrap molasses to see whether the carob made a difference. This cornbread went straight to my “favorite cornbread” ranking!
This meal also converted me to black-eyed peas. Not that I had anything against them before, but this was the first time I’d made them from the dried peas. I get frustrated cooking beans because it always seems to take about five times as long as everyone says it will. These babies, though? 40 minutes and they were well and truly done. Granted, I had soaked them overnight, as recommended, but that never helped me with other beans.
And so, black-eyed peas have become my new favorite bean to cook. Or are they peas? What is the difference, I wonder?