So this is actually a recipe for Hoppin' John, but it's so frighteningly real, you'll jump back with terror.

Jumpin John!

I should note in advance that I've never actually had non-vegan Hoppin' John. I do know, however, that it's usually made with ham. This version uses homemade fakin' to reproduce (with frightening accuracy) that "hammy" quality. But in a good way. Not the gross way.

Jumpin' John

  • 1 medium-sized yellow onion, diced
  • 1 medium-sized tomato, diced
  • 1 rib of celery, diced
  • 1 medium-sized green bell pepper, diced (optional)
  • 4 cups cooked--or 2 cans--of black-eyed peas
  • 4 strips of fakin, cut into smallish pieces
  • 1 cup long grain brown rice (I used brown basmati)
  • 2 cups veggie stock
  • 2 tsp thyme (or 4 large sprigs)
  • 1.5 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 - 1 tbsp liquid smoke
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce (or gluten-free tamari)
  • salt and pepper to taste

First things first, let's start that brown rice in the veggie stock--pour the rice and stock into a medium saucepan and heat on high until boiling. Reduce heat and cover. Brown rices take 4-eva.

Now, with that out of the way, let us, you and I, sautee the onion, celery, and green pepper (if using) in a medium to large-ish pot, over medium heat. Wonderful. In the meantime, I think it would be splendid to fry up some fakin. Don't you? Yes! Let's.

I had leftover fakin from Tofu MarkMuffins, which doesn't save terribly well anyway (it starts to get crumbly within a week or so, unless you freeze it). Additionally, you will most likely have a fair amount of tofu fakin crumblins. These perform like a true champeen in this dish. You will also likely have leftover fakin juice, which will work like a sweatshop laborer to make this dish as tasty as possible. In this event, you will not need the soy sauce and Liquid Smoke.

Barring the use of homemade fakin, you might find it convenient and/or enjoyable to use a store-bought variety. In this event you will most like want to "ham" things up by adding the afore-mentioned soy sauce and Liquid Smoke.

But I digress. The fakin should be in small pieces and should be fried lightly in a frying pan over medium heat, in the cooking oil of your choice. You just want it cooked, not crispy. This isn't Bone-Crunching John.

While the fakin is cooking and once the onions are soft, add in the diced tomato, then the spices, mixing well. Now add in the black-eyed peas.

When the fakin is done, add it to the mix.

When the rice is done, add that too.

Salt and pepper to your smallest of heart's content.