Blog | Rainbow Co-op Grocery in Jackson, MS

Blog

Rainbow Red Beans and Rice

Posted by Patrick on May 22, 2017

We’ve had several people ask about red beans and rice recipes that can be made meatlessly, so in honor of this Meatless Monday, we’re sharing Patrick’s favorite RB&R recipe. You don’t have to call it RB&R if you don’t want to. RB&R sounds like a train-themed R&B radio station.

This recipe calls for a pressure cooker. If you don’t have one, a way to do it on the stovetop is included at the end.

What you’ll need:

Pressure cooker or large pot (at least 6 qt capability)
Large pot (6 qt capacity)
Dry red kidney beans (2 cups for this recipe)
1 large onion, yellow
1 large bell pepper, green
3-4 stalks of celery
2 heads garlic
Toasted sesame oil
Smoked sea salt
Smoked paprika
5 bay leaves
Thyme
Salt
Vegetable stock or broth, 2 quarts
(You can substitute beer or water for some portion of stock)
Apple Cider Vinegar


Optional:
2-3 Dried chipotle peppers (whole)
½ bundle green onions
AND/OR ½ small red onion
Veggie sausages (I recommend Field Day chipotle sausages)
Italian parsley
Celery leaves
Liquid smoke
Soy sauce

Wash and soak your beans for at least an hour before beginning. If you’re not using a pressure cooker, I recommend soaking overnight.

Chop one head of garlic.

Add your beans to your pressure cooker or pot and cover with stock or broth. Add the bay leaves, a couple dashes of the toasted sesame oil, and the chopped garlic. You can add soy sauce here, too. Cook these until they’re done. Your pressure cooker has directions for this (usually 30 minutes on high) or you can find lists online. It usually takes an hour or two on the stovetop, but you want your beans to be NOT ENTIRELY DONE. You want them slightly harder than usual, just a hint of crunch to them, because you’re going to be cooking them again.

While your beans are cooking, chop up the remaining head of garlic, your large onion, your bell pepper and your celery. Save the celery leaves! Chop them up even finer than you have everything else.

Now, add enough toasted sesame oil to coat the bottom of your large pot, and throw all those chopped vegetables in there. Sautee until they’re browned, and then - toss those beans in! Don’t drain them! Cover the beans again with stock, don’t be afraid to put some red wine in there, some beer, or some water to make enough liquid.

Add thyme, any other bay leaves, chipotle peppers, and liquid smoke at this point. Everything except the smoked sea salt and paprika.

Get the seasoning right with some apple cider vinegar as this mixture cooks down. You want it to NEED a little salt right up till serving time, so don’t over-salt!

While this cooks down - it’ll take about an hour - get everything else ready - sautee your sausages, finely chop your red onion or green onion, add those parsley or celery leaves and all your toppings.

Cook up some rice! White rice is easy and traditional, but if you want to do the healthier brown rice, we’re not going to stop you!

When the beans are nice and soft, turn off the heat, give it a good beating up with a spoon to give it that half-mashed feel (that’s according to your tastes). Don’t add smoked paprika and sea salt until it’s time to serve, then top everything with your chopped onions!

I think you’ll like this recipe. The toasted sesame oil gives it a smoky, savory flavor that’s enhanced by chipotles, liquid smoke, smoked sea salt and paprika. That’s a healthy alternative to bacon, ham trimmings, or fatback, and the soy sauce and apple cider vinegar round out that meaty flavor while still keeping it meatless.

Rainbow Needs Your Help

Posted by Patrick on May 03, 2017

Greetings, Rainbow shoppers;

Since 1980, Rainbow has been Jackson’s only community owned grocery, and the only store willing to keep unhealthy products off our shelves. We’ve had some trying times, going through bank loans, refinancing, constant flooding, and even Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

But, we’ve always managed to pull through, thanks to the dedicated support of our community. So, we need your help once again.

Times are tough. While we were focused on competition from the Whole Foods Market that opened two and a half miles from our door, other national chain stores were expanding their natural and organic offerings, using their superior buying power to depress prices. This has eaten into our sales at an unsustainable rate.

We appreciate that many of you still shop here, despite the competition. Those of you who do are no doubt cognizant of another issue that we are virtually helpless to deal with: The parking lot. When we set up shop in Fondren, it was not a popular place to be, but since our arrival in 1998, Fondren has become Jackson’s hottest neighborhood. Fondren Public routinely fills the lot by five o’clock, when most of our shoppers are getting off work and coming to buy groceries.  While there is usually plenty of parking on Saturdays and Sundays (on Sundays, you can get your membership or shareholder discounts) or before five, we realize that many of you can’t, or don’t want to, shop at those times - it’s your valuable time, after all.

Due to these difficulties, Rainbow has had to cut expenses. We’ve come to a point where that’s not enough - any further cuts will lead to a downward spiral that could cause the end of the cooperative.

We’re not asking you to donate money or make huge changes to your spending habits. If every member spends an extra three dollars on each trip, we will be on the road to a comfortable financial status.

There’s a lot of stuff you can get for three dollars at Rainbow - we’re showcasing those things on our Facebook page, Twitter, and Instagram. Just one addition to your cart will make the difference between a thriving local business, or another derelict building. You’ve already helped make a tremendous difference in Jackson, anchoring this neighborhood and creating a community. It won’t be hard to save the Coop, we just need your help.

Thank You;

Rainbow Coop