Happy Almost New Year! Legend has it that eating black-eyed peas (or Cow Peas to be a stickler for exactness) on New Year's Day will bring good luck and fortune in the new year. We can all use a little of that, right?
This recipe is for my version of Hoppin' John, the southern classic of black-eyed peas, bacon or sausage or ham hock, and rice. The problem is I'm all about eating up the luck but not as hip on black-eyed peas so I cheat and basically make another southern staple: red beans and rice, but add a can of (cooked) black-eyed peas. They actually add an earthy, delicious undertone to the red beans and rice without overpowering it for those of us who aren't big black-eyed pea fans.
Glenna's Hoppin' John (Crock-pot/Slow Cooker)
(for non-black-eyed pea lovers)
Recipe by Glenna Anderson Muse
Makes 10 cups
1 medium onion, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
8 oz. dried small red beans, picked over, rinsed, and soaked in water for 2 hours up to overnight
16 oz. light smoked sausage, quartered and chunked
32 oz. chicken stock
1 bay leaf
2 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp salt
1 to 2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
1 15 oz. can black-eyed peas
2 cups cooked brown rice
Optional: hot sauce and chopped green onions for garnish
1) In a large skillet, sauté onion, celery, pepper, and garlic until onion is translucent.
2) Add vegetables, stock, drained beans, smoked sausage, and seasonings to Crock-pot/Slow cooker. Add additional water until everything is covered plus one inch. Cook on high for 4-5 hours or until beans are tender. Check occasionally and add more water if needed.
3) Remove bay leaf. Add black eyed peas and brown rice. Turn to low and cook for 1 hour longer.Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed. Serve with hot sauce if desired.
Cook's note: If you don't have time to soak the beans, no worries, just add an hour to the time in the slow cooker.
Nutrition per cup: Calories: 256; Protein: 13; Carbs: 26; Fat: 8; Fiber: 9.