I am faithful to just a handful of bloggers including Katrina who writes The Gluten Free Gidget at http://glutenfreegidget.blogspot.com/ . I love Katrina's blog. She writes about fresh ingredients, interesting ingredients that intrigue me and she has the most positive attitude ever. Her theater background plays front and center in a well scripted narrative of a young, enthusiastic hard working fun loving employee, wife, sister, friend . . . just waiting for the next crazy moment to present itself. She is generous beyond measure and her recipes are to die for, especially this Hoppin' Jane I made last evening.
I am little more skeptical of certain new ingredients, including buckwheat which is a gluten-free grain that shows up in a lot of gluten-free recipes. The first time I had buckwheat I was visiting my brother in Virgina, another Celiac in our family. He took Tina and I to this hole in the wall street vendor that sold savory buckwheat crepes out of a shack with a window on the street. They were weird and wonderful at the same time. Tina has mastered these at home and every now and then we enjoy a savory buckwheat crepe for dinner. I can't say I crave the odd tasting grain but it works and it is fun to have Tina cook a gluten free dinner.
So when I read Katrina's recipe I was a bit put off by the addition of buckwheat, trying to figure out what I might use instead. Lots of ideas came to me including quinoa which I don't really like and brown or wild rice. After careful deliberation I decided to give the buckwheat a try, why not.
I threw the very easy to prep ingredients together with just a few modifications and within an hour I was eating a wonderful bowl of pipping hot Hoppin' Jane, savoring every bite. You can check out the recipe yourself over at Katrina's blog at http://glutenfreegidget.blogspot.com/ .
Instead of green pepper I used a red pepper, just because I don't like red pepper. I also used a jar of black eyed peas I canned myself last fall, Katrina calls for frozen black eyed peas. If I made this dish again I would use the frozen peas for a couple of reasons. I over packed the jar of black eyed peas and by the time I was eating them in this dish they had been cooked three times and literally disappeared in the dish, they were the consistency of refried beans. My result also seemed a little dry, especially the collard greens. Using frozen peas might add more moisture. I might also dial back a little on the amount of buckwheat, to get a less bulky dish, or add more canned tomato. Regardless of my commentary, the dish was to die for. I loved the buckwheat and the flavor of the combination of herbs Katrina selected. This is an over the top vegan, low fat, and good for your macular health meal!