Black Eyed Peas: A Lucky New Year’s Tradition

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Black eyed peas are a beloved Southern comfort food with a rich history. They’re not only packed with flavor, but also brimming with essential nutrients. This versatile legume can be enjoyed in a variety of dishes, from hearty stews to lighter salads. Today, we’ll delve into a classic black eyed peas recipe that’s guaranteed to warm your soul.

Ingredients:

How To Cook Black-Eyed Peas
How To Cook Black-Eyed Peas

1 pound dried black eyed peas, rinsed and picked over

  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pound smoked sausage, sliced (optional)
  • 2 cups chopped tomatoes (canned or fresh)
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce (optional)
  • Salt to taste
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)

  • Instructions:

    1. Prep the Peas: Rinse the black eyed peas thoroughly in a colander. Pick them over to remove any debris or discolored peas.
    2. Bring the Broth to a Boil: In a large pot, combine the rinsed black eyed peas and chicken broth. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the peas are tender. Check for doneness periodically and add additional water if needed to maintain enough liquid to cover the peas.
    3. Sauté the Aromatics: While the peas simmer, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, celery, and bell pepper. Sauté for 5-7 minutes, or until softened and translucent.
    4. Add Spices and Herbs: Stir in the minced garlic, dried thyme, oregano, and black pepper. Cook for an additional minute, allowing the fragrant aromas to bloom.
    5. Incorporate the Sauté into the Pot: Add the softened vegetables from the skillet to the pot with the simmering black eyed peas.
    6. Smoked Sausage (Optional): If using smoked sausage, add it to the pot along with the vegetables. Simmer for an additional 10 minutes to allow the sausage to heat through and infuse the flavors.
    7. Tomatoes and Hot Sauce (Optional): Stir in the chopped tomatoes and hot sauce (if using). Simmer for another 5-7 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.
    8. Seasoning and Finishing Touches: Taste the mixture and adjust seasonings with salt, as needed. Remove the bay leaf before serving. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.

    Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

    This recipe yields approximately 8 servings. Here’s a breakdown of the estimated nutritional content per serving:

    Calories: 350

  • Fat: 10g
  • Saturated Fat: 3g
  • Cholesterol: 40mg
  • Sodium: 500mg (depending on the chicken broth used)
  • Carbohydrates: 45g
  • Fiber: 10g
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Protein: 20g

  • Please note: This is an approximate nutritional value based on the ingredients listed. Actual values may vary depending on the specific brands used. It’s always recommended to consult a nutrition professional for personalized dietary guidance.

    Conclusion

    Black eyed peas offer a delicious and affordable way to incorporate essential nutrients into your diet. This recipe is a simple yet flavorful way to enjoy them. Feel free to customize it with your favorite spices and add-ins, such as corn, okra, or chopped greens.

    Black Eyed Peas FAQs:

    1. Can I use canned black eyed peas instead of dried? Absolutely! To use canned black eyed peas, drain and rinse them before adding them to the pot. Reduce the cooking time by about 30 minutes, as canned peas are already pre-cooked.
    2. How can I make this recipe vegetarian? Simply omit the smoked sausage. This won’t significantly impact the overall flavor of the dish.
    3. What are some good side dishes to serve with black eyed peas? Black eyed peas pair well with a variety of Southern staples, such as cornbread, coleslaw, or potato salad.
    4. Can I freeze leftover black eyed peas? Yes! Let the cooked black eyed peas cool completely before transferring them to an airtight container or freezer bag. Properly stored, they can be frozen for up to 3 months.