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LUCKY HOPPIN JOHN

 Traditionally made and eaten New Year's Eve/ Day Hoppin John is a Southern staple.  The beginnings of this dish can be traced back to around 1841. 

There are two main origin stories the first being that the dish was once sold in the streets by an old man nicknamed Hoppin John.  The other is that the association of luck with the Hoppin John came from the fact that it was used to feed the livestock as well as the humans who worked the same. They were lucky to be alive and able to sustain themselves on such. 


Whichever is the case, Hoppin John is made and eaten by millions every New Year's Day but you don't only have to enjoy it once a year.  

If you are ever feeling like eating a bit of luck and abundance to enhance your prosperity magic, do so. 

Makes 4-6 servings

Ingredients

1 cup dried black-eyed peas 

1/2 lb. salt pork, cut into 1/2" cubes

half an onion, chopped

half a hot red pepper, seeded, and coarsely chopped 

1 cup uncooked long-grain rice 

1 tsp. salt

pepper to taste

Directions

1. Sort and wash peas. Place in a Dutch oven pot (if you don't have one it is not the end of the world) Cover with water 2 inches above the peas. Let the peas soak overnight. Drain the peas and return them to your pot.


2. Add the salted pork, onion, and red pepper to the peas. Add enough water to the pot to cover the ingredients. Cover the cooking pot and bring to a rolling boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour.

3. Stir in the remaining ingredients.  Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

4. Check to see if the mixture is creamy in texture. If it is not creamy, add 2 cups of water so that the rice has enough liquid to cook until it is tender.

5. Continue simmering the pot for another 10 minutes.  When the rice and peas are both tender, remove from the heat and serve with cornbread and collard greens.