Thursday, December 29, 2011

Black eyed peas recipes

 After the gut-busting decadence of Christmas, it's nice to settle in with simple, humble fare for New Year's, like the Southern traditional foods - black-eyed peas and greens. Southerners eat their peas on New Year's Day to bring luck and partaking of greens is said to put plenty of green, as in money, in your pocket in the coming year. We may need all the luck and money we can get to avoid the Mayan Apocalypse...

Black-eyed peas in bag. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books
Here are a few black-eyed pea recipes. I prefer using dried peas because 1. they're cheaper, and 2. I like the texture and flavor. But I don't turn up my nose at canned or frozen peas, or goodness knows, fresh, if you can fnd them.

First up, black-eyed peas as appetizer, in a Southwest classic, Texas caviar. Jazzed up with onion and tomato and a garlicky dressing, it's an addictive snack.

Texas caviar. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books
Next up, Black-eyed peas vinaigrette, a Southern favorite with a sweet and sour mustardy dressing.

Black-eyed peas vinaigrette. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books

When I want a warm bowl of nourishment, I prefer to cook my black-eyed peas low and slow, in a braising pot, with the traditional bit of seasoning meat or vegetarian with amped-up spices.

Black-eyed peas with Indian spices. Lucy Mercer/A Cook and Her Books

Look for tomorrow's post on greens for a new twist on the same-old, same-old.

Text and images copyright 2011, Lucy Mercer.


Felicia said...

I can't remember if I've ever had black-eyed peas, but you do make me want to try them! Anything that both brings good luck and is fun to look at must be good--and your recipes sound terrific!

Richard Moore said...

I soaked my dried peas for New Year's Day and tried the Texas Cavier recipe. We were very pleased with it. My only addition was adding a small amount of chopped long green pepper. We enjoyed it on New Year's Day but it was even better after a night of marinating in the refrigerator.

Lucy Mercer said...

Richard - I think Texas Caviar is even better the next day, too! Happy New Year!