1 lbs European style center cut bacon, chopped
4 celery stalks, sliced
1 12oz. bag Flav-R-Pac Frozen Southwest Blend
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
8 cups chicken broth
2 12oz. packages Flav-R-Pac Frozen Blackeye Peas
2 tablespoons olive oil
1.5 cups uncooked jasmine rice
sliced green onion (optional)
Cook bacon in a Dutch oven over medium-high, stirring occasionally, until starting to crisp, about 10 minutes. Add celery, onion, Southwest Blend, garlic, thyme, black pepper, cayenne, and 1 teaspoon of the salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes. Add broth and black-eyed peas and bring to a boil over medium-high. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until peas are tender, about 40 minutes. Drain pea mixture, reserving cooking liquid. Return pea mixture and 1 cup of the cooking liquid to Dutch oven. Cover to keep warm; set aside.
Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high. Add rice and cook, stirring often, until fragrant and lightly toasted, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in 3 cups of the reserved cooking liquid and remaining 1⁄2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil, and reduce heat to medium-low; cover and cook until rice is tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork, and gently stir into pea mixture in Dutch oven. Stir in remaining cooking liquid, 1⁄4 cup at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Sprinkle servings with sliced fresh scallions. Alternatively, you may leave rice and pea mixture unmixed and serve peas on top of rice as desired (pictured above).