Today is Monday which translates to red beans and rice. Camellia red beans and rice is a loved traditional ritual served in my house every Monday. In my head and stomach, Mondays were synonymous with red beans simmering on the stove while we washed clothes. The kidney bean is a southern Louisiana staple but it is also found in many other cultures and cuisines. For example, kidney beans are also used in a spicy Indian stew called rajma masala and in sweet dishes such as an Asian ice cream and habichuelas con dulce (sweet cream of beans).
1 large smoked ham hock ½ tsp. cayenne
1 lb. red kidney beans ¼ tsp. black pepper
2 T. butter flavored shortening ½ tsp. thyme
¼ cup bell pepper, chopped 1 tsp. liquid smoke
½ cup celery, chopped ½ lb. smoked sausage
1 cup onions, chopped 4 cups cooked log-grain rice
4 garlic cloves, chopped
2 bay leaves
Heat shortening in a skillet, sauté bell peppers, celery and onions till the onions are clear add salt, cayenne, black pepper and thyme. Add the bay leaves and dump all this into the pot with the cooked ham hock. Add the beans, garlic, and enough water to cover everything in the pot. Bring to a boil; reduce the heat to a simmer covered continue to cook until the beans are soft to the touch. Sauté the sausage and dump into the pot. Cook covered for another hour. Add a little more water and turn the heat up high. The reason you are boiling the beans is to cause them to burst or what we call cream the beans. Remove the bay leaves and serve over steamed rice.