West Indian Rice and Peas with Tempeh
coconut, shredded, unsweetened (desiccated)
(soaked for 5 hours at least)
sweet red bell peppers
salt and black pepper
scallions, spring or green onions
Sauté rice and coconut in the 2½ tablespoons oil for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly.
Add the water and cinnamon stick.
Cover the pot and bring it to a rapid boil.
Do not peek at the rice, but when the steam starts escaping, turn the heat down.
Simmer for 40 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook the black eyed peas with the bay leaf in salted, boiling water until tender (only takes abot 20 to 25 minutes).
Drain them and remove the bay leaves.
Keep warm until the rice and tempeh are ready.
Sauté the garlic and onion with the ¼ cup of oil until the onions soften.
Stir in chile and bell pepper.
Sauté for 2 minutes. Add fennel, tempeh, salt and pepper.
Lower heat, but stir frequently til tempeh is crisp and golden.
Combine everything, mixing together well.