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New Year’s Day Black Eyed Peas

Hello everyone! Happy New Year! Today’s recipe is a New Year’s Day tradition for Alex and me, and for so many across the United States! In Southern traditions, Black Eyed Peas are eaten with Greens and Corn Bread, to bring prosperity in the new year. I can’t recall exactly when I started making a pot of New Year’s Day Black Eyed Peas, but every year the recipe is a little different. This year’s recipe though, is my favorite version.

Black Eyed Peas

This one-pot dish is as quick as it is easy; it doesn’t need to simmer all day on the stove. You want the black eyed peas to keep their shape and not become mushy; with the pot likker ladled over as a savory broth. Topped with a little olive oil, cracked pepper and fresh thyme, it’s a very satisfying dish!

Black Eyed Peas ingredients

You can use a pressure cooker to avoid an overnight soak on the beans, but I feel like I have less control over the pressure cooker than I do over just watching and tasting during the cooking process. The night before, soak one pound black eyed peas (about 2 cups) in 6-8 cups of water. Sort though the beans as you add them to the pot to get rid of any small pebbles or other debris that might be in the package.

New Year’s Day Black Eyed Peas

The next morning, drain the beans and set them aside. The slab bacon is optional, but I highly recommend it. It adds so much flavor and richness to the beans. Alternatively, you can use a ham hock.

Cube 4-8 ounces of slab bacon, in a dutch oven or large pot, add two tablespoons of olive oil to the pot and cook the bacon for about 5 minutes, until it’s shiny and begins to take on a little color. Add 1 chopped medium-sized onion to the bacon and cook until the onion softens, about 5 minutes.

Then add the Chopped Garlic and the Thyme Sprigs, stir to combine. Add the drained Beans and 8 cups of cold water. Bring it up to a low boil over medium-high, then reduce to medium-low and simmer for about 35-45 minutes. Skimming the foam off the top as needed.

After 20 minutes of simmering, taste the beans and broth often. You’re checking for doneness of the beans and you’re adding salt to taste as you go. While this was simmering, I whipped up a quick batch of cornbread. You can get my method for cast iron skillet cornbread from my Cornbread Andouille Dressing post.

Plate it Up!

I like to use a slotted spoon to heap the Black Eyed Peas and bacon into a shallow bowl, then ladle the broth over the top. Drizzle a little olive oil, add some cracked black pepper and a some fresh thyme leaves. A couple dashes of Tabasco is really nice too!

Black Eyed Pea soup

This is a perfect Sunday Supper; not just for New Year’s Day, but all winter, it’s comforting and delicious. An easy one-pot meal to bring prosperity and good luck in the new year! Go all in and make some cornbread and collard greens to have with your Black Eyed Peas and celebrate the beginning of a brand new, and more prosperous year!

Black Eyed Peas

Thank you all for joining me today. What are your New’s Year’s Day traditions? Let me know in the comments and be sure to give me a follow on Pinterest, Instagram and facebook. If you haven’t yet subscribed to Djalali Cooks, sign up to get new post notifications and special unpublished recipes! Take care and be well, everyone. I will see you here again tomorrow. xo Kelly

New Year's Day Black Eyed Peas

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Dinner, Main Course American
By Adapted from Julia Sullivan, Epicurious Serves: 4-8
Prep Time: 15 Minutes Cooking Time: 45-55 Minutes Total Time: About 1 Hour, 10 Minutes

Easy, one-pot recipe for Black Eyed Peas with Bacon and Thyme will bring prosperity in the new year.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp. Olive Oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 4 -6 oz Slab Bacon, cut into 1/2-1" pieces (optional)
  • 1 medium Onion, finely chopped
  • 5 Sprigs Thyme, plus leaves for serving
  • 4 Garlic Cloves, smashed and chopped
  • 2 cups Black Eyed Peas, soaked overnight, drained
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

Instructions

1

Heat olive oil in a large dutch oven or pot over medium heat.

2

Add bacon, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon starts to look shiny and gets some color, about 5 minutes.

3

Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden and tender, about 5 minutes.

4

Add thyme sprigs, garlic, black-eyed peas, and 8 cups cold water and bring to a simmer over medium-high.

5

Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer gently, skimming any foam from surface, until beans are tender, 35–45 minutes.

6

Discard thyme; season with salt.

7

To serve, drizzle beans with oil and top with thyme leaves and cracked pepper.

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  • Cindy D.
    January 1, 2022 at 12:07 pm

    Every New Yesrs day, I cook collard greens, black eyes peas, slow roasted pork butt and cornbread. A southerners traditional lucky meal to begin the new year.

    • Kelly Djalali
      January 1, 2022 at 1:28 pm

      Absolutely perfect, Cindy! Happy New Year – It sounds like you’re kicking it off just right! xo Kelly

  • Beth Crawford
    January 1, 2022 at 12:22 pm

    Happy New Year Kelly ! Thank you always giving us yummy recipes. My family is from the south so we always serve this over rice. The dish is called Hoppin John. Everyone in my family loves it. I have used all kinds of pork in mine but my husbands favorite is if I use one boneless short rib. I cook everything the same way you do just substituting the short rib for your bacon. Of course we have cornbread too !

    • Kelly Djalali
      January 1, 2022 at 1:30 pm

      Hello Beth! A boneless short rib is such a great way to go. I will have to try that. It’s such a great dish, I love the brothy beans. Happy New year to you and your family! xo Kelly

  • Terry
    January 1, 2022 at 12:28 pm

    I’m making a similar recipe just the meat is different. I hope 2022 brings you and Alex lots of success, ???? Mom

    • Kelly Djalali
      January 1, 2022 at 1:31 pm

      Thank you Mom! Happy New Year! xo Kelly

  • Mari
    January 1, 2022 at 12:44 pm

    I’ve never had black eyed peas, but this lovely recipe might persuade me. We don’t have any New Year’s traditions, so it might be nice to latch onto one. I do love the way the South celebrates every holiday and enjoys life. Everyone should. was in bed by ten last night, and it was almost nine before I wakened for the day. That’s another tradition I’d like to start. I’m an early riser and it’s hard to break that habit! Today I baked a braided apple bread that had risen overnight, and later I am trying a new eanut butter oatmeal cookie recipe. I was going to pop into Costco to renew my membership, but I think it would be too crowded, so today is baking day. Also cleaning up the spare rooms day. Then again that’s a weekly thing, since the spare rooms magically attract clutter. Our old house had tons of closets and storage cubbys, and this one doesn’t. It does have a large basement with shelves, so I think it’s going to get done. Eventually.

    Happy New Years and hugs to Kelly, Alex, Terry and the Fur Babies. ❤️??

    • Kelly Djalali
      January 1, 2022 at 1:34 pm

      Hi Mari, You will love these Black Eyed Peas! Your braided apple bread sounds so lovely on day like today – it’s stormy here in Athens. I just imagine the aroma filling the kitchen. Good luck on your cleaning and organizing, I am working up to taking down all the Christmas decor today. Happy New Year! xo Kelly

  • Carroll
    January 1, 2022 at 1:21 pm

    I have a pot of black-eyed peas on my stove. I use the liquid from the peas to cook rice for hoppin’ John.

    Happy New Year!!

    • Kelly Djalali
      January 1, 2022 at 1:36 pm

      Hello Carroll, I bet that is deliciously savory rice! Gotta Love Hoppin’ John – Happy New Year to you and yours! xo Kelly

  • Kenzie
    January 1, 2022 at 7:16 pm

    A very Happy New Year to you. I hope it brings all you wish.
    As a child in Scotland we used to have steak or steak and kidney pie on New Year’s day usually after a very late night where New Year was “brought in” with Atholl Brose. This was a drink made from the liquid poured from rolled oats soaked in water overnight, whisky, honey and cream.
    Now I live in NZ and the meal is usually left over baked ham from Christmas with a few different salads. Much easier and more relaxed although I still find having Christmas in summer odd even after all these years!

    • Kelly Djalali
      January 2, 2022 at 8:03 am

      Hello Kenzie, Atholl Brose sounds like a really delicious drink! We had a very warm Christmas here in Athens and it got me imagining what it would be like to have Christmas in summer. I am not sure I could get used to it! Leftover baked ham would be a perfect addition to a pot of New Year’s Day Black Eyed Peas! I wish you and your family a very Happy and Healthy New Year! xo Kelly

  • Joy
    January 2, 2022 at 8:44 am

    Usually, with fresh BEpeas, I do Hoppin John and sautéed cabbage, but yesterday I used this recipe and did Cole slaw to go with our grilled pork chops-
    This is a delicious recipe- thankfully there was fresh thyme in herb bed that the dogs hadn’t trampled

    Happy New Year

    • Kelly Djalali
      January 2, 2022 at 8:50 am

      Good morning Joy, Wow! What a perfect combo – grilled chops and slaw with these black eyed peas is a fantastic combination. I can taste it now…I bet it was so delicious! Thank you so much for sharing how you served this recipe, it’s an inspiration to us all! Happy New Year, xo Kelly