|Nellie Stevens Holly|
Hopping John Recipe
1 cup chopped onion
1 chopped red pepper
1 chopped green pepper (I used 2 red peppers)
1 cup chopped cooked ham
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 small cans of black-eyed peas
1/2 to 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce if desired
3 cups cooked rice
salsa if desired
sour cream if desired
In a large skillet, cook onion, peppers and ham in oil for about 4 minutes. Drain black-eyed peas, reserving 1/2 cup of liquid. Add black-eyed peas, reserved liquid and pepper sauce ( if desired) to ham mixture and stir to combine. Heat over medium until bubbly.
Spoon over rice.
Top with salsa ( if desired) and top with sour cream. Strangely enough, I love catsup on black-eyed peas. Variation, omit rice and serve over cornbread. We like Hopping John served over rice and cornbread on the side.
This recipe is quick. Of course, if you want, you can make it very inexpensively by using dried black-eyed peas that have been cleaned, and soaked overnight, then cooked.
The eating of black-eyed peas on New Year's Day is very interesting. During the Civil War, Union soldiers took the livestock and food supplies from the farms and towns they came through for their own consumption. They basically felt the field peas were only fit for animals and left them. If it weren't for the peas that were left in the fields more would have starved. So it is thought that eating peas on New Year's came from these cherished memories of being saved from starvation.
"Your success and happiness lies in you. Resolve to keep happy, and your joy and you shall form an invincible host against difficulties."