Happy 2013!


Black-eyed peas are a traditional southern dish served to celebrate New Year’s.  Following is my own special recipe for Hoppin’ John – a great way to start 2013!  As you welcome a new year, what are your resolutions?  Writing them down is a good way to make sure you stick to them, as well as giving yourself a great writing exercise. 

Hoppin’ John a la Anne
(Southern Black-Eyed Peas and Rice)

2 ham hocks (after peas cook, pick off meat, return to peas, and discard bone)
(Can use any type of pork or bacon, can also be made without meat)
2 onions, chopped
1 carrot, cut up
1 celery stalk diced
½ t. crushed red pepper
½ green pepper, chopped (optional) poblanos are delicious as well
2 T. molasses (the key) or BBQ sauce
½ clove garlic
Salt and black pepper to taste
2 C. black-eyed peas, washed and sorted (best if soaked overnight and rinsed)
(You don’t have to soak them, just wash, sort and rinse and throw in but increase cooking by 30 minutes, but soaking makes them softer.)
1 can (16 oz.) stewed tomatoes (can be Rotelle for more spice)
2 cups brown rice

Put ham hocks and enough water to cover in a big pot and simmer for about ½ hour. (Can add dried onion and garlic to water as well.)  Sauté onion, garlic and celery.

Add everything including the black-eyed peas.  Add more water to cover.  Simmer slowly, about 45 min to 1 hour, until the peas are tender.   Add tomatoes.

While peas are cooking, cook brown rice. Can add rice to pot of peas or serve black-eyed peas on top of the rice (my preference).  Delicious with cornbread or corn tortillas.

Makes 8-10 servings.