Across the country, there are many different ways people celebrate the holidays and welcome the new year, whether it’s spending time with family and exchanging gifts or just cooking a giant feast. But there’s definitely one food you should consider making that will help bring your family good luck, and that’s black-eyed peas.
If you live in the South, you already know there are tons of classic Southern recipes that contain black-eyed peas. You can eat them with just about anything, including collard greens, rice or cornbread.
Beyond being delicious, black-eyed peas have the reputation for bringing good fortune. This came about during the Civil War, when soldiers had to survive on black-eyed peas during the harsh winter, leading to the legume becoming a symbol of fortune and prosperity. Today, they represent coin currency.
Whether you choose to cook them straight from the can or follow grandma’s tips on how to make them fresh, black-eyed peas should be on your Christmas and New Year’s dinner menus, perhaps with this classic Hoppin’ John recipe, which supplements these legumes with tons of Southern spices and rice.
After 2020, we could use all the luck we can get in the new year. Boost your luck with more dishes from a good-fortune menu.
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons peanut oil
1 large yellow onion, finely diced
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle chilies
Pinch ground allspice
4 cups frozen black-eyed peas
4 cups water
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
1 cup long-grain white rice, cooked to package directions
Melt butter with oil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat.
Add onion, bay leaves, thyme, chili and allspice.
Cook, stirring frequently until onion is lightly browned, about 7 minutes.
Add peas and 4 cups water; heat to boil.
Lower heat; simmer, covered, until peas are soft, 20 minutes.
Check pan occasionally to make sure they are covered with water; add more if needed.
Season with salt and serve over rice.