After cooking up all of that flavorful vegetable stock this week, I couldn’t wait to use it. But the last thing I wanted to do was spend an hour in the kitchen cooking because, well, sometimes there just are better things to do. So I did what I do when I want a great-tasting meal without having to spend more than 15 minutes in the kitchen– I made a slow cooker black-eyed peas stew. A fat-free one.
I have had this rather, ahem, healthy craving for black-eyed peas for weeks now and last weekend, grocery-shopping in the frozen vegetable aisle (one of my favorite haunts for healthy and frugal veggies), I found a bag of frozen black-eyed peas. No soaking required! I did a little dance in my head. Later, back home when I smelled them simmering in the crockpot along with an intoxicating medley of chipotle, adobo and cumin, I did another dance. This time not in my head.
But honestly, this stew is just SO GOOD. Smoky and spicy and warm and comforting — and super, super healthy — all at the same time. Even better, like I promised, it takes no more than 15 minutes to put together. You do need to plan ahead, though, since this is a slow cooker recipe. Don’t plan on eating within 15 minutes. This is the perfect recipe to throw together before going to bed. When you wake up in the morning and smell the aroma, trust me, you will be the one dancing.
Here’s the recipe. And if you’re in the mood for more fat-free crockpot goodness, don’t forget to check out this Fat-Free Crockpot Chili — perfect eats for the Superbowl.
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, cut in a ½-inch dice or thinly sliced in rounds
- 3 celery stalks, cut in a ½-inch dice
- 1 large bell pepper, cut in a ½-inch dice. I used green but you can use any color.
- 1 sweet potato, cut in a ½-inch dice (optional but very tasty)
- 3 cups black eyed peas (if using frozen, like I did, you can use these without any prep. If using dried, use 1 cup dried peas and soak overnight or at least 8 hours, then drain and rinse and cook until almost tender.)
- 1 cup pureed tomatoes
- 1 tsp dried, crumbled sage
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ancho chili powder
- 1 chipotle chili in adobo sauce, finely minced
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- Salt to taste
- Coriander for garnish
- Place all the ingredients in a crockpot, add the stock and mix well.
- Cover the crockpot and cook on a high setting for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours or until all the vegetables and black-eyed peas are tender.
- Garnish with coriander and serve hot with brown rice, quinoa, or crusty whole wheat bread.