½ tablespoon vegetable oil
2 slices bacon, cut into ¼ inch slivers
OR *2 cups of diced salt pork.
½ medium onion, finely chopped
½ medium green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and finely chopped
1½ garlic cloves, minced
3 leaves fresh basil leaves
¼ teaspoon sugar
¾ teaspoon fresh thyme
½ teaspoons salt (to taste)
1⁄4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
1 tablespoons tomato paste
¼ teaspoon gravy browning
2 ¾ cups water
1 ½ cups long-grain white rice
1 cup cooked pigeon peas or 1 cup black-eyed peas or 1 cup kidney beans
Then resume recipe
* If using salt pork, fry out fat and boil until almost tender.
1. Heat oil in a large, heavy pot over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until lightly browned, about 4 minutes.
2. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat. Save drippings for later.
3. Add onion, bell pepper, garlic, basil, thyme, salt and pepper, and cook until the onion is golden brown, about 5 minutes.
4. Stir in tomato paste and sugar and cook for 2 minutes more.
5. Add gravy browning ,peas and water and bring to a boil.
6. Stir in rice and return to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover pot with a tight lid, and cook 15 minutes.
If the rice is too dry, add 2-3 tablespoons water. If too wet, leave cover ajar for remaining cooking time.
7. Cook on low heat until rice is tender, about 5 - 10 minutes.
8. Pour discarded bacon drippings over the top.
9. Remove pot from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff with fork and correct seasoning if needed.
OPTIONAL: Spread a tablespoon of butter over rice and sprinkle with garlic powder. Fluff rice and serve.