- 3 red peppers, halved and deseeded
- 3 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 onions, roughly chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 20g root ginger, roughly chopped
- 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 3 tbsp tomato purée
- ½-1 Scotch bonnet chilli, stalk and seeds removed (or keep them in if you can handle the heat)
- 2 tsp Caribbean-style curry powder
- 1 tsp dried mixed herbs
- 2 bay leaves
- 350ml vegetable stock (made using 1 stock cube) - use gluten-free stock if required
- 500g basmati rice, well rinsed
- 15g unsalted butter
Step by step
- Preheat the oven to 220°C, fan 200°C, gas 7. Add the peppers to a lined baking tray, cut-side down, and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of oil. Roast for 35 minutes or until starting to blacken.
- Meanwhile, put the onions, garlic and ginger in a blender with 1 tablespoon of water. Blitz until completely smooth, adding a little more water if needed, then pour into a bowl. Clean out the blender and then add the charred peppers (including their skins), the tinned tomatoes and tomato purée, plus half or all of the Scotch bonnet depending on how much heat you want. Blitz until completely smooth.
- Heat the remaining oil in a large, deep pan. Add the onion mixture with a good pinch of salt and cook for 8-10 minutes until lightly golden, stirring. Add the curry powder and cook for a further minute before adding the tomato-pepper mixture, dried mixed herbs and bay leaves. Season, reduce the heat and cover the pan. Cook gently for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Stir the stock into the sauce and bring to the boil before stirring in the rice and butter. Bring to the boil again then reduce the heat, cover the pan with a folded piece of foil and add a lid. Cook for 40-45 minutes over a very low heat. The rice should have absorbed all the liquid, be tender and should have caught a little at the bottom to help achieve the smoky flavour characteristic of jollof ‘party’ rice. Once cooked, remove from the heat but keep the lid on for a further 15 minutes to help infuse the flavours. Remove the bay leaves, fluff with a fork and serve.