Black-eye Peas for Good Luck in any New Year

I must admit I have always been kinda lazy when it comes to making peas and beans. Only because of task of cleaning them and soaking them overnight.

This time around I researched a new method that quickens that process and has them ready to soften and absorb flavor with just a few hours of cooking. First my recipe.

  • 1 pound of Black-eye peas
  • 1/2 of a Yellow Onion, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Lawry’s Seasoned pepper
  • 1/2 Tablespoon of Garlic Powder
  • 4 Cloves of fresh garlic crushed and chopped
  • 1 Kielbasa sausage cut into bite sized discs. I browned 1/2 of them in a hot skillet and left the other half alone adding them in the last 20 minutes of cooking.
  • 4 slices of pickled Deli-sliced Jalapeno peppers (tamed or mild) chopped lightly
  • 2 Ham Hocks with the skin removed

Fast Soaking

Sort the peas to clean out any non pea elements. Rinse them and place them in a large pot. Add 8 cups of hot water and bring to a rolling boil. Boil for 4 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and let stand for 1 hour. Drain the peas and rinse them again.

Cooking

Brown the sides of 1/2 of the Kielbasa sausage in a hot skillet. Drain any excess fat.

Add 6 cups of hot water to the peas. Add all the remaining ingredients. Reserve 1/2 of the Kielbasa for adding in the last twenty minutes.

Cook for 1 – 1/2 to 2 hours or until tender. Salt and pepper to taste.

Cabbage and Cocktail Weenies. What’s not to Love?

SAMSUNG CSC

Chef Carl Binus “The Duke” was out west for New Year’s Eve 2019 festivities. We hit the night spots and ended 2018 at a huge party at Union Station. So what are two hungry bachelors ready for on New Year’s Day? We decided to assemble what is considered a good luck meal, based on a tradition that goes way back. I’m pretty sure it originates from the deep south.

The traditional Southern and Soul food of black-eyed peas, mustard greens and pork cutlets. Just to add a nod to old Germany (where both of us started on the journey to become decent cooks) we came up with a cabbage dish with a uniquely party style accoutrement known as the cocktail weenie. Perhaps a bit for the humor yes. But the flavor and finished dish was outstanding.

This recipe is going in my Good Eating Pantheon of excellent side dishes for grilled beef and pork. It goes a little something like this.

  • 1 Large head of Cabbage cut into slices about 1/2″ thick
  • 1 package of fully cooked Cocktail Smokies. Ours were from Kroger.
  • 3 Cups of water
  • 8 Wax Peppers, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Slap Ya Mama. Cajun seasoning by Walker & Sons (SlapYaMama.com)
  • 2 Tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 large Yellow Onion diced from 1/4″ slices
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Chef Duke likes to do it like this…

First, season one half of the cabbage with Cayenne Pepper. Dust the cabbage with a sprinkling of Slap Ya Mama. Lay a layer of onion pieces. Place another layer of chopped Wax Peppers. Allow this mixture to sit at room temperature for a few hours. Take the other half of the cabbage and add to boiling water (3 cups) in a large Dutch Oven or pot. If you like it spicy hot and more salty, sprinkle this first layer with cayenne and a bit of Slap Ya Mama.

Reduce to simmer. At about 20 minutes and when the first layer begins to reduce, place the remaining cabbage into the pot and cook for another 20 minutes. Add water if the reduction has allowed the tops to become dry. Add Vinegar and salt and pepper. Cook for another 20 minutes or until all the cabbage leaves are glassy and a darker green. Stir. Let rest while all the flavor infuses itself into the cabbage.

Serve it up hot and shout to the New Year, “Oooooh That’s Good!”