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Mama’s Bajan Stew with Quick Rice and Peas

Li'l Mamas Vegan Kitchen
  • Serves: 4-6
  • Preparation: 30
  • Cooking: 20
  • Ready: 50

A selection of fresh vegetables in a lightly spiced gravy with a kick of hot Bajan pepper sauce.


For the stew

  • 1-2 tablespoons coconut/vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2-3 carrots
  • ½ -1 swede
  • ½ -1 pumpkin/squash
  • ½ -1 sweet potato
  • 1½ -1 aubergine
  • 1 courgette
  • ½ punnet mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon powdered coriander
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon powdered cloves/one or two whole cloves
  • marjoram (dried or fresh)
  • thyme (dried or fresh)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • vegetable stock
  • ½ tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tin lentils
  • gluten-free soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon gluten-free plain flour
  • 2 small drops gravy browning
  • hot Bajan pepper sauce

For the rice and peas

  • 2 cups water
  • ½ tin coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon all spice
  • 2 spring onions
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 scotch bonnet
  • a few springs of fresh thyme
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • 2-3 cups basmati rice
  • 1 tin kidney beans


To make the stew

Dice all the vegetables into bite size pieces keeping the aubergine, courgette and mushrooms in a separate bowl.

On a medium heat melt the coconut oil or add the vegetable oil to a saucepan. Sauté the onions and garlic until translucent.

Add the turmeric, cumin and powdered coriander and fry altogether for about 3 minutes.

Add the carrots, swede, pumpkin/squash and sweet potato, frying until all the vegetables are coated in the mixture.

Add the vegetable stock, tinned tomatoes, salt and pepper, cloves, marjoram, thyme and bay leaves. Bring to the boil, turn down, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the aubergine, mushrooms and courgettes.

Cook for a further 10 minutes or until the vegetables start to soften.

Drain the lentils and add these to the stew.

In a cup, add the flour and enough water to turn this to a slurry. Add it to the stew to thicken.

Add a few drops of the gravy browning and then stir.

Add soy sauce, Bajan hot pepper sauce and salt and pepper to taste.

To make the rice and peas

Put 2 cups of water and ½ tin of coconut milk in a saucepan on a medium high heat.

Add spring onions, garlic, scotch bonnet, thyme and black pepper. Bring to the boil.

Wash the rice in cold water until it runs clear.

When the water is boiling, add the rice and kidney beans.

Cover and simmer for around 20 minutes or until the liquid has evaporated.

When the liquid has evaporated, remove the spring onions, garlic, thyme and scotch bonnet.

Serve with a fresh salad and coleslaw.

Additonal notes

Recipe courtesy of Li’l Mamas Vegan Kitchen

A family-run business set up in 2018, Li’l Mamas Vegan Kitchen prepares fresh vegan meals and delivers them across the Torbay area of South Devon. They started out cooking at music festivals from a large tent but the popularity of their food, especially during lockdown, led to them expanding and buying a premises.  Customers can order and pay online, choosing from 100% plant-based burgers, hotdogs, pizzas, kebabs, curries and a variety of desserts including ice-creams and ‘No Cheesecakes’.

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