Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Smoky Black-Eyed Pea Stew with Collard Greens and Bacon Seitan

Recipe by Georgianne Kamberos Simons

picture of Smoky Black-Eyed Pea Stew with Collard Greens and Bacon Seitan
I love black-eyed peas with collard greens.  It's become one of my favorite vegan staples.  The great thing is that black-eyed peas do not need to be soaked in advance; and due to their relatively small size, they cook up rather quickly!  You don't have to be specific about the amount of beans used.  This recipe is pretty flexible.  If you make them from scratch, they usually double their dry measurement. Upton's Naturals new Seitan Bacon adds the perfect additional layer of smokiness to this delicious dish!  This is such a hearty satisfying meal for the final chilly days of this Chicago weather. Enjoy!

  • 1 package Upton's Naturals Bacon Seitan, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1-2 Tbsp oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cans black-eyed peas (or 3 cups cooked)
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes (preferably fire roasted)
  • 1 large bunch of collard greens
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Black pepper
  • 1-2 cups water
  • Optional: smoked paprika, 1/4 tsp. liquid smoke, hot sauce

  1. Heat a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat.  Add oil, onion, and salt, and sauté for approximately 8 minutes, constantly stirring to avoid onion sticking to the pan.  If it does, add a little water to steam off the onion that is sticking and give it a good stir.  Add Bacon Seitan and sauté for about 3 minutes.
  2. While keeping a close eye on onions, rinse collard leaves and tear from stems.  Roughly chop.  I prefer bite size pieces, so I chop a bit more finely.
  3. When the onion has browned nicely, add the black-eyed peas, canned tomatoes, collards, black pepper, and garlic.  Add one cup of water and bring to a boil.  If you prefer a soupier consistency, add the full two cups or more of water.  Bring to a boil.  Then, lower heat and cover.  I like to cook the stew for at least 20-30 minutes, to really soften the greens, but you can use your judgment and eat sooner.  I actually like to cook the greens until they lose their bright green color, because it softens their flavor, and allows all of the flavors to marry together beautifully.
  4. When the stew is ready, feel free to add the optional ingredients to bring out an extra smoky flavor.  Use the liquid smoke with caution, it's pretty potent and can become quickly overpowering. The Bacon Seitan already has paprika, but feel free to add more to give it a kick.  The acidity of the hot sauce really brings the flavors together nicely.

Enjoy on it's own or over creamy polenta with creamed cashews!