So, while I’m sitting here watching it snow (barely), and before I duck into bed, I thought I’d update the blog. Tonight, I got the chance to make a nice dinner for Erin, and then the two of us were able to just chill here at home with a movie. I was pretty pleased with everything – Tilapia dijon (it was supposed to be catfish), hoecakes, and a low-fat strawberry cheesecake. However, I think we both agreed that the best part of the night was the Hoppin’ John.
Hoppin’ John is a pretty traditional Southern dish – mostly black-eyed peas and rice, and you’re supposed to eat it on New Year’s Day for luck. Well, I’ve been trying to make this since New Year’s, but several things have conspired to keep it from happening. Tonight was my night. Here’s my recipe, spiced up a bit from normal:
1 tbsp. oil
1 tbsp. butter
1 medium onion, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
1 medium green bell pepper, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 c. black-eyed peas
2 c. chicken stock
1 tbsp. vinegar
1. Dice your onion, celery, and bell pepper, and mince your garlic. Drain the peas, assuming you’re using canned. If not, you’re going to want to soak them for several hours, up to 7-8.
2. Heat a medium-sized pot over medium-high heat, then toss in the oil and the butter. Throwing in the butter first might cause it to burn, so be careful. Add the onion, celery, and bell pepper and sautee for 4-5 minutes. Then add the garlic and cook for another minute.
3. Add your peas, stock, and seasonings. I like it spicy, so I went heavy. Just keep in mind that canned black-eyed peas can be pretty salty to begin with. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil, then cover and kick the heat down to a simmer. Might want to get your rice cooked about now, too.
4. Let the peas for 20 minutes or so. If it’s really soupy, take the lid off and keep cooking for a while. If it’s getting dry, you can add more stock (or water). When it gets near the consistency you want, add the vinegar and cook for another minute or two.
5. Serve it over rice, along with whatever amount of juice you prefer. Fresh hoecakes soak that stuff up pretty well, by the way.