Like the cornbread and beans diet of the Confederacy or the fish and rice staple diet of the Orient, rice and beans combine incomplete proteins from two different foods to form complete proteins. The combination of rice and beans is a staple diet for much of the world’s population. You can top the Carolina Red Rice recipe with cooked dried beans (seasoned to taste). Use the recipes for Hopping John (a colonial dish served on New Year’s Day to ensure good luck) as guidelines and substitute whatever type of beans you have available. Try adding canned chili and tomato sauce or salsa to cooked rice (or make your own chili with meat, tomato sauce, and chili seasonings) and add it to any rice and bean mix (seasoned to taste with hot sauce).
- Instant or minute rice, while good for cooking in the field, won’t store for long periods (without vacuum or nitrogen packing) since it has already been cooked and then dried.
- To prepare regular long grain white rice (1 cup uncooked rice = about 3 cups cooked rice), rinse lightly and drain the water. Add one cup of water and 1/2 to 1 tsp — salt (or meat stock or bouillon) for each cup of rice.
- Optionally, add one teaspoon of butter or oil for each cup of uncooked rice. Bring to a boil over high heat and allow to boil one minute. Cover pot, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Remove from heat and let stand for 10 minutes more. Don’t open the lid while cooking.
- 3 cups of water
- 1 cup uncooked rice
- 1/2 cup quick-cooking black beans
- (see the previous section for instructions on preparing quick- cooking beans or substitute cooked dried beans or a can of cooked beans)
- 1 tbsp. instant beef bouillon
- 3 tbsp. margarine
- 1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
- 1/2 cup chopped dried pineapple
Put all ingredients in a frying pan and mix. Cover and cook over medium heat for about 20 minutes. Don’t stir while it’s cooking because that will make the rice gummy. When the water has been absorbed, test rice for doneness. If it’s still a little chewy, add a little more water and cook a few minutes more.
Carolina Red Rice
- 1/4 lb. bacon
- 3/4 cup chopped onions
- 2 cups cooked rice
- 2 cups canned tomatoes (or reconstituted dried tomatoes)
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1/4 tsp. Tabasco sauce
Cook bacon, remove from pan and crumble. Cook onions in bacon fat until tender. Add rice, tomatoes, seasonings and crumbled bacon. Cook on low heat about 35 minutes, stirring well. Stir with a fork several times while cooking. Check after 15 minutes and add water if needed.
- 2 cups cooked black-eyed peas
- 2 cups cooked rice
- 1 chopped onion (optional)
- 2 tbsp. butter
- dash salt, pepper, and hot sauce
Blend and heat slowly about 30 minutes.
Hopping John Soup
- 1 cup dry black-eyed peas (“southern caviar”)
- 8 cups of water
- 6 slices bacon
- 3/4 cup chopped onion
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 cup of regular rice
- 2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
Rinse black-eyed peas. In a large saucepan add the peas and water, bring to a boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand 1 hour. Drain, setting aside 6 cups of the cooking liquid. In a heavy saucepan, cook the bacon, onion, and garlic until the bacon is crisp and the onion is tender but not brown. Remove the bacon, drain on paper towels: crumble and set aside. Stir the black-eyed peas, raw rice, salt, pepper, and reserved cooking liquid into mixture in saucepan. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat. Simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Stir in crumbled bacon, and it’s ready to serve eight regular folks or two good ol’ boys.