Hoppin' John

Hoppin' John/ Black-Eyed Peas
Lisa Charles Watson/Photolibrary/Getty Images
    3 hrs 30 mins
Ratings (16)

These well-seasoned black-eyed peas are essential for New Year's Day dinner (for good luck!). 

I used ham hocks in this version, but a meaty ham bone or salt pork can be used. Add some sliced spicy smoked sausage or extra diced ham to the dish if you like.

What You'll Need

  • 1 pound dried black-eyed peas
  • 2 small smoked ham hocks or meaty ham bone
  • 2 medium onions, divided
  • 3 large cloves garlic, halved
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1 can (10 to 14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes with chile peppers, juices reserved
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 ribs celery, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno or serrano pepper, minced
  • 2 teaspoons Cajun or Creole seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 green onions, sliced

How to Make It

  1. In a large Dutch oven or large saucepan, combine the black-eyed peas, ham bone or ham hocks, and 6 cups water. Cut 1 of the onions in half and add it to the pot along with the garlic halves and bay leaf. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer gently until the beans are tender but not too soft and mushy, 2 to 2 1/2 hours.
  2. Remove the ham bone or hocks, cut off the meat; dice and set aside. Drain the peas and set aside. Remove and discard the bay leaf, onion pieces, and garlic.
  1. Add 2 1/2 cups of water to the pot and bring to a boil. Add the rice, cover, and simmer until the rice is almost tender about 10 to 12 minutes.
  2. Mince the remaining onion then add to the rice along with the peas, tomatoes, and their juices, red and green bell pepper, celery, jalapeno pepper, Creole seasoning, thyme, cumin, and salt. Cook until the rice is tender, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the sliced green onions and the reserved diced ham.

Serve with hot sauce and freshly baked cornbread. For a New Year's Day meal, add mustard greens or turnip greens, along with coleslaw or a tossed salad.

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