Staple Food Challenge #7 Vegetarian Jambalaya

Staple Food Challenge #7 Vegetarian Jambalaya

Our next participant is the incredibly talented Zoe! Her blog, Hot Day Cold Day, features loads of amazing recipes and insights into nutrition. She recently took on our Staple Food Challenge in support of FareShare Greater Manchester. As always, all the Bounceback Food used in the recipe has also been donated to Zoe’s nearest FareShare foodbank.

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Yesterday I was supposed to be painting, it was so, so sunny and bright (and my first proper day off for ages) that we decided to have a break and walk up to our local craft and food market.

I’m SO GLAD we did that!

Whilst there I found out about the fantastic Bounceback Food, a social enterprise that sells healthy, staple food on a ‘one for you, one for society’ basis. Every time you buy a product from Bounceback Food, another one is donated to your nearest food bank or community project via FareShare, the UK’s leading food redistribution charity.

BRILLIANT idea.

In my ‘other job’ I work in mental health, so I was immediately interested. Not only have I seen the number of food banks available decline over the past few years, I have also seen an increasing need for this type of support. One thing I always notice is the quality of the food – it’s generally very poor. However, Bounceback Food  only sell and donate high quality products that food banks need – hence the 2 cans of Chopped Tomatoes I purchased for their Staple Food Challenge. It was the end of the day, so there wasn’t much else left (a good sign!) but it left me happily dreaming overnight, wondering what easy, inexpensive meal I could create using my 2 cans of chopped tomatoes.

I LOVE a challenge…

Anyway, I finally decided on a Vegetarian Jambalaya with Smoky Black Eye Beans and Sweet Potato. Very easy to cook, uses only one pot and works well with a variety of different ingredients if you don’t have everything to hand. The great thing about this meal is IT’S EASY to prep (10 mins) and cook (35 mins). Here’s the ingredients I used and the instructions I followed:

Ingredients (recipe serves 6 people)

  • 3 Cups Long Grain Brown Rice from Bounceback Food (they donate the same tin to your nearest food bank!)
  • 1 Large Sweet Potato Peeled
  • 3 Large Spring Onions / Scallions OR 1 onion
  • 5 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 Vegetable Stock Cube
  • 2 Tins Organic Chopped Tomatoes from Bounceback Food
  • 1 or 2 Cans Black Eye Beans I used 2 for this recipe, 1 would be fine though…
  • 1 Bunch Chopped Coriander
  • 2 Tbsp Hot Smoked paprika
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 5 Cups Boiling Water

Method

  1. Fry chopped onion, garlic and stock cube in olive oil.
  2. When slightly browned add 2 cans of chopped tomatoes and gently simmer for 5 minutes
  3. Add 2 TBSP of Smoked/Hot Paprika, stir and continue to simmer
  4. Add peeled, sweet potato- large chunks are better, they won’t dissolve.
  5. Add the black eyed peas and stir everything together.
  6. Add 3 Cups of long grain, brown rice and stir
  7. Add boiling water immediately, about 5 cups. Bring to the boil and then gently simmer for around 25-30 mins. Keep checking (but don’t stir) as you may need to add a touch more water. When the water has been soaked up and the rice is soft enough, turn the heat off and put the lid on so it’ll steam in all it’s delicious flavours.
  8. Finally, stir in your chopped coriander.