Sunday, February 3, 2013


So, clearly I have been on a bit of a blackeyed peas bender. They are so cheap, and so cute, and they cook so quickly! You really don't need to soak them overnight (unlike garbanzos, which take forever); just simmer for 40 minutes and you're good to go.

I had some leeks left laying around (languorously), and I almost made this bean-and-leek dish (soon!), when I discovered lubiya, I think by reading about Jewish good-luck New Year's foods. Lubiya, though, is apparently the Arabic spelling, not the Hebrew 'rubiya.'

However you spell it, and whoever's complicated culinary history you situate it in, lubiya is sort of like Middle Eastern chili. I found this excellent recipe on adaba foods (now julia's kitchen). I followed the recipe pretty much to the letter, though in a moment of laziness, I dumped some cooked greens and saffron rice into the bowl so as to only need to wash one dish (see above).

(from adaba foods)

1 c dried black eyed peas, soaked overnight
2 TB olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 leek, cleaned and sliced
4-5 large cloves of garlic, minced
1-2 tsp cumin
1 tsp sumac, if available (if not, use add lemon juice when beans are soft; see next ingredient section)
3 stalks celery, chopped
1 chili pepper, minced
6-8 c of water
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp turmeric
1/2 c strained tomatoes
2-3 TB olive oil
2-3 TB freshly squeezed lemon juice, or to taste (if sumac is not available)
a dash of cinnamon
salt and pepper, to taste
1 c brown basmati rice, preferably soaked overnight
1 TB olive oil
pinch of saffron (optional)
1/2 tsp salt
water to cook (1 3/4 cups water if rice was soaked)

1. Drain and rinse your black eyed peas and rice, keeping them separate, and set aside.  In a large soup pot set over medium heat, saute onions in olive oil until lightly browned, then add leeks and continue to cook.  When the leeks begin to brown, make a well in the center, pour in a little more olive oil, and saute the minced garlic and cumin for a minute or two until it’s very fragrant.  Stir it all together, then add the celery, minced chili pepper, water, paprika, and turmeric.  Bring to a boil and then turn the heat to medium low and cook until the beans are as tender as you like them.
2. Meanwhile, cook the rice. If you’ve soaked it, put it in a medium pot with the olive oil, saffron, salt, and water in the proportions given above.  Bring to a boil, then turn heat to medium low and cover to simmer for 30 minutes.  If you didn’t soak it, follow the rice:water ratios provided on the package. as well as the cooking time.  Now it’s time to finish the soup.  Once you add the acidic ingredients (tomato and lemon) and the salt, you might find that the beans won’t soften any more, so be sure they are soft enough before you do that.  The rice is fine sitting in the pot until you are ready for it.  Add the tomato, lemon, salt and pepper and simmer for about another 15-30 minutes (or more).  Taste, adjust seasonings, and serve hot. Serves about 4-5.

1 comment:

janet @ the taste space said...

I love rediscovering foods like this... I forgot how great BEPs were, too, until I pulled them out to celebrate the new year. :) Totally bookmarking this. :)