I have been leveled by PMS this past week, and wanted to write about it since I can’t seem to muster up the desire to write (or think) about anything worthwhile that isn’t maudlin. In lieu of a typical blog post, I thought I would share a poem with you that I wrote tonight on my commute home:
Hopelessness, negating everything
I was looking forward to yesterday.
It’s a cliché to say every woman
turns into a monster during her time
of the month. But I feel the change,
right down to my cells. Nothing
can alleviate this sensation of dread.
I have to ride it out, like a nasty storm
that causes you to lose your bearings.
And know that when this passes, I will
once again look forward to my favorite things.
And one of my new favorite things is this dish. I’ve never made an Ethiopian dish before, although I really like Ethiopian food. This recipe is adapted from one by Marcus Samuelsson, so you know it’s delicious! A word of caution when making this: wear gloves when handling the chiles! I failed to do that and spent several hours with my hands writhing in pain. After several attempts at trying to wash the oils off, I finally succeeded by slathering my hands in vegetable oil, then washing it off with a mixture of baking soda, hydrogen peroxide and a splash of dish detergent. Thanks, Google! That being said, I could eat this every day. The ginger-garlic-chile trifecta is one of my all-time favorite things. This dish is bursting with flavor; it has a nice level of heat, and the coconut milk adds lovely creaminess which makes it a very satisfying and hearty dish. Let me know what you think in the comments!
Black-Eyed Peas with Coconut Milk and Ethiopian Spices
- 2 cups dried black-eyed peas 12 ounces
- Kosher salt
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 large red onion minced
- 2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 1 habanero chile seeded and minced
- 2 teaspoons berbere seasoning*
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 3 medium tomatoes chopped
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth
- 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
- 3 scallions thinly sliced
- In a large saucepan, cover the peas with water and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderately low heat until tender, about 40 minutes.
- Add a generous pinch of salt and let stand for 5 minutes, then drain well.
- Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, melt the butter. Add the onion, ginger, garlic and chile and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and just starting to brown, about 10 minutes.
- Add the berbere and turmeric and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring until softened, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the coconut milk and stock and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes break down and the sauce is thickened, about 20 minutes.
- Add the peas to the sauce and cook over moderately low heat, stirring, until the peas are lightly coated, about 10 minutes. Fold in the cilantro and scallions and serve.