When I visited San Francisco a year ago, one of the things I brought back with me was a package of some very fine red beans. Smaller than kidney beans. Perfect for red beans and rice (still on the to-be-cooked list). But also perfect for a Jamaican side dish. Especially for someone who likes her beans on the smallish side. And when you cook this dish with all that ginger and allspice and coconut milk, you get the best darn rice and beans...err peas...that you've tasted.
Jamaican Peas and Rice
Adapted from food.com
¾ cup dried small red beans
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 slice ginger, ½-inch thick and 1 inch in diameter
3 allspice berries
4 cups water
1 (14½-ounce) can coconut milk
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
½ teaspoon Goya Adobo seasoning without pepper (blue lid)
Freshly ground black pepper
1 green onion, root removed, crushed
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 fresh Scotch bonnet pepper, pierced with a sharp knife
1½ cups basmati rice
Combine the beans, garlic, ginger, allspice, and water in a saucepan. Cook, covered, over medium heat until tender, about 2 hours.
Add the coconut milk, butter, Goya seasoning, pepper to taste, green onion, thyme, and whole fresh pepper. Bring to a boil, then remove the hot pepper. Add the rice and stir. Return to a boil, cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 25 minutes, or until all the liquids have been absorbed. Serve hot as a side dish.
Makes 8 servings