I'm not sure where I first heard about eating black eyed peas on New Years Day for good luck. I just know that for years, it's been a tradition...sometime during the 1st day of January, in some form or another, I eat black eyed peas. Originally I would just open up a can of the stuff, heat it up and eat it plain. I moved on to using frozen black eyed peas and maybe adding ham hocks. This year I decided to try using some of the fresh stuff and actually use a recipe.
Which is where I made my first mistake (yes, less than 24 hours into the new year, I screwed up something I was cooking! Sigh). When I bought the plastic container of fresh black eyed peas, I read the recipe on the side of the package, saw the time it took to cook the peas and said "Great! That's the same amount of time it takes to cook the peas in the recipe I want to try". What I didn't do was see that ABOVE this recipe on the container was a little note about having to cook the peas for 20 minutes before putting them in said recipe to cook.
Needless to say, there was a bit of an issue with the peas being hard as a rock when the cooking time of this recipe was up. I had to keep adding water and simmering the dish until the peas were tender enough to eat.
That being said, it didn't taste to bad at all, even with the extra cooking. The recipe came from the December 2007 issue of Cooking Light magazine. I wasn't sure about how the mustard greens would taste, but who knows, I may have just cooked any weird taste right out of them! I found "curly mustard greens" in a bag at the local grocery store. Though they were "chopped" I tore the leaves from the stems which seemed a bit hard (and since the recipe called for "trimmed" greens I guess this is what they meant).
I cut this recipe in half. I also think next time I'd add something like Tabasco or such to spice it up a bit.
HOPPIN' JOHN WITH MUSTARD GREENS
2 cups water
2 tablespoons whole-grain Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
2/3 cup finely chopped ham
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups cooked black-eyed peas
4 cups chopped trimmed mustard greens
Combine first four ingredients, stirring with a whisk; set aside.
Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion to pan; saute 6 minutes. Add rice, ham, and garlic; saute 2 minutes. Stir in water mixture; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes. Add peas and greens; cover and cook 5 minutes. Stir rice mixture; cover and cook an additional 5 minutes or until greens and rice are tender. Yield; 6 servings (serving size; about 1 1/3 cups)
Note: I used Grey coupon mustard, Uncle Ben's converted rice, and leftover Honeybaked ham.
Note: I put in about a cup of the diced ham even though I had halved the recipe. I would probably put even more ham in next time as I liked the flavor it gave.