In New Orleans as my father-in-law has always told me, that Mondays is for red beans and rice, that’s been simmering on the stove for hours, bringing the most intoxicating aromas of garlic ,onions, smoked meats and spices in your home. Honestly, he makes the best red beans and rice I have ever had. Now here’s my take on this New Orleans tradition, this one happens to be vegan. But I think it lends just as much flavor. However, Paw Paw’s red beans and rice is always the winner.
Vegan Red Beans
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
2 ribs celery, rinsed and chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 teaspoon jalapeño, deseeded and diced
3 15-ounce cans red beans( drained and well-rinsed. I used Simple Truth Organic Dark Kidney Beans
1/2 cup low sodium organic vegetable broth
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
1/2 teaspoon red pepper cayenne or more or less, to your preference
1 bay leaf
• Add a tablespoon or more cooking oil to a large saucepan on medium heat.
• Add chopped vegetables into the pot and add 2 tablespoons of water. Cook until soft, about 6-10 minutes.
• When the vegetables are soft, stir in the beans, the vegetable broth and add all seasonings Cover tightly, reduce heat to very low, and cook for at least 30 minutes. Stir beans every 5 or 10 minutes, so they don’t stick, also add a bit more of the low sodium vegetable broth, if the beans liquid begins to evaporate. You want the beans to be moist. Longer the beans cook, the more flavor you will get, but add vegetable broth, if needed during the cooking process. 15 minutes before they are done, take a fork and mash up half of the beans, this will make them nice and creamy.
• Once done add them to a bowl and top with chopped green onions or parsley. I serve them with rice and cornbread. Click the link for my cornbread recipe.