New Year’s Day Black-Eyed Peas

Black Eyed Peas

I’m from the South, so it’s just not New Year’s Day if there isn’t a big pot of Black-Eyed Peas on the stove.  Traditionally, Black-Eyed Peas are both a bringer of good luck for the year as well as a great hangover food.  The hardest part of the process is remembering to soak them then night before.  So after you pop that last bottle of bubbly, grab a bag of dried peas and throw them in a bowl to soak.  You’ll thank yourself in the morning.

Since I’ve been on a bit of a health kick lately, I tried to lighten the whole thing up a bit this year, opting for smoked turkey for flavoring instead of my beloved pork fat.  Feel free to use Ham Hocks or my usual favorite, the left-over Christmas Ham bone.  Bon Appetite!

Ingredients

1 Bag dried black eyed peas.  Rinsed, sorted and soaked overnight.  Drained

2 tbsp Canola Oil

1 Small Onion diced

3 pieces (approx. size of a fist) Smoked Turkey Tails, Necks or Legs

1 tsp kosher salt

Black Pepper to taste

3 Tbs. chopped fresh thyme plus additional sprigs for garnish

Drain peas from soaking liquid and sort to make sure any foreign materials are removed.

Directions

In Large Cast Iron dutch heat oil over medium high heat.  Add onion.  Saute until soft.

add drained peas, turkey, black pepper and.  Add water to the pot until peas are covered by at least an inch.  Turn heat to high and bring to a boil.  When pot reaches a boil, reduce heat to medium low and let simmer until peas are soft– two to three hours.  Skim surface of any accumulated fat and discard.

Remove turkey about 30 minutes before serving.  Remove meat from bone and add meat back to peas, discarding bones.

Add a Dash of Hot Sauce if you like it spicy and garnish with thyme sprig. Serve with freshly made cornbread and a salad for the perfect New Year’s Day lunch.

If you are so inclined, tradition says to throw a dime in the pot while cooking.  The person that finds the dime in their bowl is said to have the bet luck for the year.  Personally, I prefer to cook without pocket change and take my chances.

Happy New Year!

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