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Hoppin John


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  • 1 pound dried black-eyed peas
  • 2 pounds ham, cubed (originally called for 2 small smoked ham hocks or a meaty ham bone which was to be added at the beginning then removed and the ham cut off it, but instead used Hormel Cure 81 ham and used 2 pounds of it).
  • 1 large sweet onion, diced ( or 2 medium onions)
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced (or use jarred or dried)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cups brown rice (long-grain white rice ok)
  • 1 can (10 to 14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes with chile peppers
  • 1 medium red bell pepper and 1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 3 ribs celery, chopped
  • Red pepper flakes, to taste ( 1/2-1 teaspoon)
  • 4 Knorr ham flavored bouillon cubes (large)
  • 1/2 t. dried thyme leaves
  • 3/4 t. ground cumin
  • 1 27 oz or 2 14 oz cans of kale greens seasoned southern style



Step 1

Sort and rinse the black-eyed peas. Add 6 cups of water to the peas and soak them overnight (6-8 hours minimum). The next day, discard the soaking water and rinse the peas a couple of more times. If you are rushing, use the quick soak method as specified on the bag the peas came in.

In a "large" Dutch oven, add 8 cups of water to the rinsed, soaked black-eyed peas. Start cooking over high heat until peas come to boil. Meanwhile, dice the onion, peppers, celery, garlic, etc. and add to the pot as you go. Add the ham flavored bouillon, bay leaf, and spices. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer gently for 2 hours. Discard the bay leaf.

Add 1- 1 1/2 cups of water (depending on amount of rice you use) to the pot and bring to a boil. Add the rice, cover, and simmer until rice is almost tender (about 40 minutes for brown rice or 10 for white rice).

Add the kale greens and tomatoes to the peas. Cube the ham and add it to the peas. Turn up the heat a bit and cook until everything is hot---at least 15 minutes but more like 20. Can be served with hot sauce and freshly baked cornbread. We germans season ours with Maggie Seasoning in the little brown bottle.


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