In a blender/food processor add the tomatoes, bell pepper, ½ onion, 1 whole scotch bonnet, 2 cloves garlic and ½ finger ginger. Blend until smooth.
Chop or slice the red onion.
In a pan, heat the oil and add the sliced/chopped onion and stir-fry for 1 minute. Then add the tomato puree and cook for a further minute.
Add the blended mix, bay leaves, curry powder, dried thyme, bouillon cube/powder and a pinch of salt and cook on a medium heat for 10 to 12 minutes, until reduced. Stir occasionally to avoid burning. This stew will be the base for the jollof.
Wash the rice thoroughly and parboil in a separate pot for 5 minutes. Rinse and add to the stew and mix.
Cover the pot with foil/parchment paper before putting a lid over it. Put on a low heat and cook for ½ hour. Mid way, stir the rice as the sauce tends to stay at the bottom of the pot. This will ensure the rice cooks evenly.
Once the rice is done, add sliced white onions and the mixed frozen vegetables and stir through.
To get the ‘party’ flavour, transfer into an ovenware dish and cook in a preheated oven at 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6 for 10 minutes. This will give it a smoky taste like it has been cooked over an open fire. Hence the name ‘party jollof’.