On Harbour Island when we stopped for lunch at Angela’s I was heartened to see that she had options for a vegetarian in this fish-intensive culture. I got an egg sandwich and an order of peas and rice. I’m a connoisseur of legumes so I was interested in seeing the Bahamian take on pigeon peas and oh, were they delicious! They were so good that when I couldn’t finish them I asked for a takeout container and carried the little doggie bag all the way back to the boat. I asked Angela what was in them and she said, “You can put whatever you want in them. Whatever your heart desires.” This is the same answer she gave when Jack asked how he should order his conch burger. I had to press her for more specific info but all I got was “onions, peppers, a little thyme.”
Back on Escape Velocity I set about trying to find an authentic recipe for Bahamian Peas and Rice. Sometimes the Internet is too much of a good thing. I found many recipes that claimed to be authentic only to be followed by 50 or so reader comments saying no, that’s nothing like it. I figured it’s one of those things that varies by region and tradition but I sure would like to get a basic rundown that I can start with. In the meantime I put the pigeon peas on to soak.
Monday morning Bandit came by to collect the mooring fee and I asked him about it. He gave me a strange look and breathed a heavy sigh to let me know I was overreaching a bit. Jack shot me a warning look. But then Bandit proceeded to give me chapter and verse on how to cook peas and rice, right down to how long to cook the tomato sauce before adding the rice. After he was done, I asked a few questions to clarify and he got that impatient look back and said, “It’s whatever you want. However you like it.”
Sounds just like Angela. Whatever our hearts desire. I can run with that.
I followed Bandit’s directions and our peas and rice turned out delicious. You can read the directions at my other blog, Monday Beans.
Bandit came by this morning to see if we were staying and I reported back to him our peas and rice success. I got a thumbs up.