For dinner tonight I did a vegetarian version of Hoppin’ John (which if you have read this blog before you will notice I happen to love!). I always have dried vegetables on hand due to recipe testing for TrailCooking so in a pinch when I have no desire to drive to town, I just grab them. All you need to do is cover the dried vegetables with a 1:1 ratio of cool water and let sit to rehydrate for 15 to 30 minutes and then proceed as with fresh. For items like celery where one doesn’t use a lot day-to-day it is efficient and cost-effective to have around. I preach it a lot on TC, but having dried items around is a great thing. I get much of mine from Harmony House Foods.
The barley stays crisp in this recipe, with a nice snap to it. If you desire more of a sauce consider using an extra cup of broth. I use ultra low sodium broth so I added in a little salt. If you use full strength broth you shouldn’t need the salt.
Barley Hoppin’ John
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 medium sweet onion, peeled and chopped
1 bell pepper, seeded and chopped (1/2 cup diced dried)
2 stalks celery, chopped (1/4 cup dried)
1/2 tsp diced dried garlic
3 cups lower sodium broth (vegetable, beef or chicken)
1 cup pearl barley, rinsed well
1 tsp dried thyme (or 1 Tbsp fresh)
2 tsp lemon juice or 1 packet True Lemon powder
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
15 ounce can black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
Heat the oil in a heavy large saucepan over medium heat, add in the onion, bell pepper and celery, cook till softened.
Add in the barley and seasonings, let cook for a couple of minutes, stirring often. Add in the broth and peas, bring to a boil. Cover tightly and reduce heat to low. Let simmer for 20 minutes or until the barley is cooked, stirring often. Turn off the heat and let sit for 5 minutes.
Serves 3 to 4