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Hoppin’ John Recipe for a Hoppin’ New Year

Black eyed peas make me think of two things. Well, three really.

1. The band. What fun music they produce! {bustin’ out the dance moves}

2. My grandfather. He passed away many years ago, but I remember going to visit him in Houston when I was a kid. We’d eat at one of two restaurants near his home. I preferred ‘The Black Eyed Pea,’ right on I-10. It’s long gone now, but have fond memories of sharing meals with my grandfather and family there.

3. The New Year.

So it’s a southern tradition to serve black eyed peas for good luck in the new year. And while I don’t really consider myself southern on a regular basis, I definitely think of myself as southern when it comes to celebrating this New Year’s Day tradition.

While you could just heat up some black eyed peas straight out of a can and dose them with some salt and pepper, I wouldn’t recommend it. Because that’s boring. And seriously lacking in flavor.

This recipe of Hoppin’ John has 3 KEY ingredients, that I think every.single.version. should have:

Served over brown rice as it’s own dinner, or as a flavorful side dish for your New Year’s Day feast!

{Here’s another black eyed pea recipe that calls for the addition of some ‘greens’ and ‘maters…Black Eyed Peas with Greens.}

And HAPPY 2015 to you!!!

Hoppin’ John

Adapted from: Simply Recipes

Yield – 4 meal servings or 8 to 10 side dish servings

Preparation Time – 15 minutes

Cooking Time – 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 small green pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 small red pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 slice thick cut bacon
  • Ham hock, optional
  • 1 lb. dried black eyed peas
  • 1 Tbsp Cajun seasoning mix
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Brown rice, optional for meal

Directions

  • To a large saucepan, add the olive and saute the onion, peppers, celery and garlic for 3-5 minutes. Add the bacon slices and saute for a few minutes to allow the bacon to cook some. Add the dried black eyed peas, Cajun seasoning plus the chicken stock plus 3-4 cups more of water. The peas need to be covered by about 1 1/2 inch of liquid. (You can always strain off liquid at the end, so be generously. You don’t want to be left with 3/4 cooked peas!)
  • Stir everything together and bring to boiling. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium and cover tightly with lid. Let cook for about 45 minutes to an hour, or until peas are soft. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Prepare the rice if you are making this as a meal.
  • Serve Hoppin’ John as main meal or side dish.
  • And Happy New Year!