Black eyed peas – greens and corn bread are a New Year southern tradition in our home. How about yours? Do you do beans and greens? These tried and true, old fashioned southern recipes are a healthy treat any time of the year. But, at New Years, an actual ‘MUST’!
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Black Eyed Peas – Greens and Corn Bread
You don’t have to be from the south to love these good, old fashioned dishes, but it helps! I grew up on black eyed peas, as they were a staple in our southern home. As a matter of fact, when I was very young and anemic, the doctor had my parents serve me a couple of big spoonfuls of black eyed peas – several times a day. I drank only water, no milk products, and ate real food. Guess what? It cured my anemia!
The secret of a long life is to eat right and love what you do.” ~ Dr. Leila Denmark (114 years old)
Black Eyed Peas Nutrition
The funny looking little dried peas are full of healthy goodness. They support the immune system, and build up the blood. Black eyed peas are actually beans, and packed full of iron. They count as a vegetable, are full of protein, and healthy fiber to regulate digestion and cholesterol.
Black Eyed Peas
Black eyed peas were’t just for New Years day at our house! They can be a simple, frugal, and healthy addition to any meal.
- Dried black eyed peas
- Pot of water
- Optional: cup or two of chicken broth, red pepper flakes
- Rinse black eyed peas in strainer to remove any foreign particles
- Cover beans in large pot with water and bring to a rolling boil for two minutes
- Turn heat off and let stand for 30 minutes – 1 hour.
- Rinse peas in collander and place back in pot, covered with water (add broth if available)
- Bring to a boil, turn down heat to low and simmer for 1 – 3 hours, carefully stirring occacionally, add water as needed. If cooking in crock pot, simply add peas back to pot with water, broth, and seasoning and cook for 3-4 hours on high.
- Season with salt, pepper, dried red pepper as desired
Instant Pot Black Eyed Peas
It’s best to soak black eyed peas overnight. I like to do the quick boil method for two minutes, shut off heat, soak one hour. Drain, rinse, and soak overnight. The next day – rinse beans and add to Instant Pot with enough water to cover them and seasonings stirred in. Cook on high for 25 – 30 minutes.
Often, especially here in the south, we have homemade corn bread to accompany our black eyed peas. The way my Nanny made it was a simple mix of 1 part corn meal and 1 part flour. Now, she was not big on exact measurements, but I can offer you the basics. She said she knew it was done, “When it smelled right.”
We make our corn bread in a cast iron skillet using self-rising cornmeal and flour. Adding bacon fat is a traditional touch that I prefer not to go without, although, you may substitute vegetable oil or coconut oil (if you must). In case you don’t have any buttermilk around, use whole milk and a tablespoon or two of vinegar. Stir it in and let it sit for a bit and it will turn the milk just right for you.
- Tbs bacon grease (substitute veg oil or coconut)
- 1¼ cup white cornmeal (self-rising)
- 1 cup flour (self-rising)
- 2 tsp baking soda
- pinch salt (1/2 tsp)
- 1½ cups buttermilk (or whole milk with 2 Tbs vinegar)
- egg (optional)
- 1 stick salted melted butter
- Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. Add bacon grease to cast iron skillet and place in over to heat. Using a mixing bowl underneath, add dry ingredients through a sifter (or just add to mixing bowl and stir well). Beat egg into buttermilk, add to dry mix, stir in butter.
- Add mix to hot cast iron skillet, turn oven down to 400. Place skillet in center oven to cook for 15-20 minutes depending on size of skillet or round pan. (should be 10 - 12 inches diameter)
Southern Style Greens – Especially for New Years Day
If you’ve ever had greens from Cracker Barrel Restaurant, you have a good idea of how we fix ’em down here. We often add ham, hot sauce, and/or vinegar juice to flavor them. I like to cook them in a bit of chicken broth and use left over ham from Christmas. Mixing a couple of different types of greens is also a tasty option. Smart people also crumple a bit of bacon on top. 🙂
Southern Style Greens Recipe
- 1 bunch kale or mustard greens
- 1 bunch collards and/or turnip greens
- large onion, chopped
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced (or 2 Tbs)
- jalapeno pepper, chopped (no seeds)
- 1 – 2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
- 1 cup shopped ham
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup chicken broth
- salt and pepper
- balsamic vinegar (optional)
- crumpled bacon garnish
- Preheat a large skillet with bacon fat, olive oil, or coconut oil.
- Bring a pot of water with 1 1/2 Tbs salt to a rolling boil.
- Wash greens, remove big veins, rip into large pieces.
- Add greens to boiling water for about 5 min. until wilted.
- Add onion and garlic to preheated skillet while greens boil;
- Sauté until onions are lightly brown, add jalapeno peppers
- Cook for two minutes – stirring.
- Greens will be done boiling – drain and rinse.
- Place cooked onions, garlic into empty large pot or crockpot.
- Add greens, ham, red pepper and 1 cup broth -2 cups water.
- In crock-pot, cook on low for six hours.
- In large pot, simmer on medium/low – check frequently.
- Make sure it doesn’t burn (add water or turn down heat).
- Cook for 1 – 2 hours slowly or until greens are really soft.
Optional, serve with balsamic vinegar, crumpled bacon. Sides corn bread, and black eyed peas!
Instant Pot Greens
Use saute’ function to cook any meat, bacon, and onions. Add other ingredients, but replace liquid with just 2 cups of broth. Cook on high for 30 minutes.
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