Black Eyed Peas and Kale or Ribs & Sauerkraut for New Year's Day? It depends on where you grow up. I like them both, but I lean toward the black eyed peas. They are really scrumptious and vegan.
Do Black Eyed Peas and Kale bring good luck?
Years ago, when Don and I lived in Williamsburg, Virginia, we were invited to a Black Eyed Peas party to ring in the new year. It was a fun excuse to eat good food and socialize. But did you know that in the South (U.S.) you are supposed to eat Black Eyed Peas on New Year's Day to promote good fortune for the coming year? Neither did we. And Don grew up in the South.
This recipe takes about 15 minutes to prepare and then you let it cook, melding all the beautiful flavors, for 5-6 hours. The result is amazing.
History of Black Eyed Peas
When I researched it, I found that during the Civil War, black eyed peas were considered "animal food." When the Union soldiers came through an area, they often took most of the food, leaving the black eyed peas because they were considered inedible. Surprise! They are not only edible, they are delicious and nutritious! Black eyed peas are usually white or tan with a darker spot (eye). For some reason, my black eyed peas are a darker variety and look more like red beans. No worries, though. You can use red beans, white beans or black beans for this recipe if you want.
Down Home Vegan
We have eaten a lot of meat lately so I made this vegan meal from one of my favorite cookbooks, Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker (affiliate link) by Robin Robertson. Along with some Cornbread, it was a good "down home" meal. This recipe is best made in a slow cooker (affiliate link) cooking the peas for 5-6 hours.
If your slow cooker isn't programmable, you can add a light timer (affiliate link) to it to turn it on when you want. A timer a simple, low cost option. Or use a programmable slow cooker (affiliate link).
I think anytime is a good time for this Slow Cooker Black Eyed Peas and Kale! It's vegan, gluten free and totally amazing. I like to eat the peas over the kale without any pasta, but Don likes to have his over noodles.
What You Need
For this recipe you'll need some simple tools, including measuring cups and spoons, a vegetable peeler, good knives, a sautÃ© pan and a slow cooker. But what you really want is a cast iron skillet to make corned bread in and some beautiful pottery dishes, am I right? The pottery link takes you to my potter friend's website. Kary Haun makes some amazing pottery.
Slow Cooker Black Eyed Peas and Kale Recipe
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 carrots peeled
- 2 shallots minced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 15- ounce cans of black-eyed peas drained and rinsed
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 1 bunch kale
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Cut the carrots in half lengthwise and then cut each half in half-inch chunks.
- Heat the oil in a skillet and sauté the shallots a few minutes.
- Then add the carrots and continue to sauté until the shallots are transparent and the carrots begin to brown.
- Add the garlic and continue cooking for about 1 minute.
- Transfer the mixture to a 4-6 quart slow cooker.
- Add the peas, vegetable stock and pepper.
- Cook on low for 5-6 hours.
- A half hour before serving, remove the stems from the kale and chop into bite-sized pieces.
- Cook kale in a pot of boiling water for about 5 minutes until the greens are tender but still bright green.
- Drain the greens and stir them into the pot of peas. (Or simply serve the beans over top of the kale.)
- If you like, serve the dish over a bed of wide noodles, along with a salad and some cornbread or crusty french bread.
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