Typically eaten with cornbread, this dish is a New Year’s Day tradition in the South. The black-eyed peas symbolize prosperity for the coming year. Take it a step further by serving with cash-colored collard “greens.”
1-4 smoked ham hocks
6 cups chicken stock or water (See directions)
1 pound dried black-eyed peas, rinsed
1 large onion, chopped
2-4 cloves garlic, diced
1-3 jalapeno peppers, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
Several pieces of bacon, cooked and crumbled
* Vary chicken-stock-to-water ratio according to the amount of smoked meat used. With four ham hocks, water only may be used; a bouillon cube may be later added if necessary.
* If desired, factor one or two of the half-consumed beers from the previous night into to the liquid mixture.
* Put all ingredients in an enameled Dutch oven or crockpot and cook on low for 4-8 hours. (The ambitious may sauté the onions and garlic first.)
* Take out the ham hocks, remove the meat, add it back to the pot, and serve.
* Have Tabasco sauce on hand.
— From the kitchen of Stacy Eakes, Baltimore
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